Skip to main content

Full text of "Studies of nature (Volume 3)"

See other formats

Bethesda, Maryland 














'"resident of the Philadelphia Linnean Society, and Professor of Materia Medica, Natui 
and Botany, in the University of Pennsylvania. 







Vol. m. 


Fragment, by way of Preamble to the Arcadia - - HI 

Arcadia, Book I. ------ 167 

Wishes of a Recluse ----- 257 

Wishes for the King- .... - 280 

Wishes for the Clergy ----- 28:> 

Wishes for the Nobility - 290 

Wishes for the People - - - - 300 

Wishes for the Nation - 306 

Wishes for a National Education - - - 343 

Wishes for the Nations ----- 355 

Sequel to the Wishes of a Recluse - - - 371 

Of the Nobility and the National Guards - - 41(1 

Of the Clergy and the Municipalities 
The Cofl'ee-House of Surat 

The Indian Cottage - - - 4 ' J 




I HAVE proposed to myself an object of no mean impor- 
tance in composing this little Work. I have endeavoured to 
paint in it, a soil, and vegetables different from those of Europe. 
Our Poets have long enough composed their lovers to rest, on 
the banks of the rivulets, in the flowry meads, and under the 
foliage of the beech-tree. My wish is to seat mine on the 
shore of the Sea, at the foot of rocks, under the shade of cocoa- 
trees, bananas, and citrons in blossom. Nothing is wanting to 
the other hemisphere of the Globe, but a Theocritus, or a Virgil, 
in order to our having pictures at least as interesting as those of 
our own Country. 

I am aware that travellers, of exquisite taste, have presented 
us with enchanting descriptions of several of the islands of the 
South-Sea ; but the manners of their inhabitants, and still more 
those of the Europeans which frequent them, frequently mar the 
landscapes. It was my desire to blend with the beauty of Na- 
ture between the Tropics, the moral beauty of a small Society. 
It was likewise my purpose, to place in a striking light certain 
truths of high moment, and this one in particular : That human 
happiness consists in living conformably to Nature and Virtue. 

It was not necessary for me however to compose a romance, 
in order to exhibit a representation of happy families. I declare 

Vol. III. A 


in the most solemn manner, that those which I am going to dis- 
play have actually existed, and that their History is strictly true, 
as to the principal events of it. They were authentically cer- 
tified to me by many respectable Planters with whom I was 
acquainted in the Isle of France. I have connected with them 
only a few indifferent circumstances ; but which, being personal 
to myself, have on that very account the same merit of reality. 
When I had formed, some years ago, a very imperfect sketch 
of this species of Pastoral, I besought a fine Lady, who lived 
very much in the Great World, and certain grave personages 
who mingle very little with it, to hear it read over, in order to 
acquire some pre-sentiment of the effect which it might produce 
on readers of a character so very different : I had the satisfaction 
of observing that it melted them all into tears. This was the only 
judgment which I could form on the matter, as indeed it was 
all that I wished to know. But as a great vice frequently walks 
in the train of mediocrity of talents, this success inspired me 
with the vanity of giving to my Work the title of, A Picture of 
Nature. Happily for me, I recollected to what a degree the 
nature of the climate in which I received my birth was strange 
to me ; to what a degree, in countries where I have contemplat- 
ed the productions of Nature merely as a passenger, she is rich, 
various, lovely, magnificent, mysterious ; and to what a degree, 
I am destitute of sagacity, of taste, and of expression, to know 
and to paint her. On this I checked my vanity, and came to 
myself again. I have therefore comprehended this feeble essay 
under the name, and placed it in the train, of my Studies of Na- 
ture, to which the public has granted a reception so gracious ; in 
order that this title, recalling to them my incapacity, may like- 
se preserve an everlasting recollection of their own indulgence. 



ON the Eastern declivity of the mountain which rises be- 
hind Port-Louis, in the Isle of France, are still to be seen, on 
a spot of ground formerly cultivated, the ruins of two little cot-< 
tages. They are situated almost in the middle of a bason form- 
ed by enormous rocks, which has only one opening turned to- 
ward the North. From that opening, you perceive on the left, 
the mountain known by the name ©f Mount-Discovery, from 
which signals are repeated of vessels steering for the island ; 
and at the bottom of this mountain, the city of Port-Louis ; to 
the right, the road which leads from-Port Louis to the quarter 
of Pamplemousses ; afterwards the church of that name, which 
rises with it's avenues of bamboos, in the middle of a great plain ; 
and beyond it, a forest which extends to the farthest extremities 
of the island. You have in front, on the brink of the Sea, a 
view of Tombay : a little to the right Cape Misfortune, and be- 
yond that the boundless Ocean, in which appear, on a level with 
the water's edge, some uninhabited little isles, among odicrs 
Mire-Point, which resembles a bastion in the midst of the 

At the entrance of this bason from whence so many objects 
are distinguishable, the echoes of the mountain incessantly re- 
peat the noise of the winds which agitate the neighbouring for- 
ests, and the roaring of the billows, which break at a distance 
iipon the shallows ; but at the very foot of the cottages, no noise 
is any longfr to be heard, and nothing to be seen around except 
great rocks, as steep as the wall of a house. Tufts of trees 
grow at their bases, in their clefts, and up to their very sum- 
mits, on which the clouds settle. The rains which are attract- 
ed by their peaks frequently paint the colours of the rainbow 
on their green and dusky sides, and constantly supply, at the 


bottom, the sources of which the small river of the Lataniers 
is formed. A profound silence reigns through this inclosure, 
where all is peace ; the air, the waters, and the light. Scarcely 
does the echo there repeat the murmuring sound of the palmists, 
which grow on their elevated stalks, and whose long arrow-form- 
ed branches are seen always balanced by the winds. A mild light 
illuminates the cavity of this bason, into which the rays of the 
Sun descend only at noon-day ; but from the dawning of Au- 
rora, they strike upon the brim of it, the peaks of which, rising- 
above the shadows of the mountain, present the appearance ot 
gold and purple on the azure of the Heavens. 

I took pleasure in retiring to this place, where you can enjoy 
at once an unbounded prospect, and a profound solitude. One 
day, as I was sitting by the platform ol these cottages, and con- 
templating their ruins, a tnan considerably advanced into the 
vale of years happened to pass that way. He was dressed, con- 
formably to the custom of the ancLnt inhabitants, in a short 
jacket and long trovrsers. He walked bare-footed, and support- 
ed himself on a staff of ebony wood. His hair was completely 
white, his physiognomy simple and majestic. I saluted him 
respectfully. He returned my salute, and having eyed me for 
a moment, he approached, and sat down on the hillock where I 
had taken my station. Encouraged by this mark of confidence, 
I took the liberty of addressing him in these words: " Can you 
" inform me, Father, to whom these two cottages belonged ?" 
" My son," replied he, " these ruins, and that now neglected 
" spot of ground, were inhabited about twenty years ago by two 
" families, which there found the means of true happiness. 
" Their history is affecting : but in this island, situated on the 
" road to India, what European will deign to take an interest in 
" the destiny of a few obscure individuals ? Nay, who would 
" submit to live here, though in happiness and content, if poor 
" and unknown ? Men are desirous of knowing only*the history 
" of the Great, and of Kings, which is of no use to any one." 
" Father," replied I, " it is easy to discern from your air, and 
" your style of conversation, that you must have acquired very 
" extensive experience. If your leisure permits, have the good- 
(t ness to relate to me, I beseech you, what you know of the an- 


" cient inhabitants of this desert ; and be assured that there is 
" no man, however depraved by the prejudices of the World, 
f but who loves to hear of the felicity which Nature and Vir- 
" tue bestow." Upon this, like one who is trying to recollect 
certain particular circumstances, after having applied his hands 
for some time to his forehead, the old man related what follows. 

In the year 1 35, a young man of Normandy, called De la 
Tour, after having to no purpose solicited employment in France, 
and looked for assistance from his family, determined to come 
to this island in the view of making his fortune. He brought 
along with him a young wife whom he passionately loved, and 
who returned his affection with mutual ardour. She was de- 
scended from an ancient and opulent family of her Province ; 
but he had married her privately, and without a portion, because 
her relations opposed their union on account of the obscurity of 
his birth. He left her at Port-Louis, in this island, and em- 
barked for Madagascar in the hope of there purchasing some 
negroes, and of immediately returning hither, for the purpose 
of fixing his residence. He disembarked at Madagascar du- 
ring the darfgerous season, which commences about the middle 
of October, and soon after his arrival died of the pestilential 
fever, which rages there for six months of the year, and which 
always will prevent European Nations from forming settlements 
on that Island. 

The effects which he had carried with him were embezzled 
after his death, as generally happens to those who die in foreign 
countries. His wife, who had remained in the Isle of France. 
found herself a widow, pregnant, and destitute of every earthl. 
resource except a negro woman, in a country where she was en- 
tirely unknown. Being unwilling to solicit assistance from an\ 
man, after the death of him who was the sole object of her af- 
fection, her misfortunes gave her courage. She resolved to cul- 
tivate witft the help of her slave, a small spot of ground, in or- 
der to procure the means of subsistence. 

In an island almost a desert, the soil of which was unappro- 
priated, she did not choose the most fertile district of the coun- 
try, nor that which was the most favourable for commerce ; but 
looking about for some sequestered cove of the mountain, som; 
hidden asylum, where she might live secluded and unknown 


she found her way from the city to these rocks, into which she 
slunk as into a nest. It is an instinct common to all beings pos- 
sessed of sensibility, under the pressure of calamity, to seek 
shelter in places the wildest and the most deserted ; as if rocks 
were bulwarks against misfortune, or as if the calmness of Na- 
ture could compose the troubles of the soul. But Providence, 
which comes to our relief when we aim only at necessary com- 
forts, had in store for Madame de la Tour a blessing which nei- 
ther riches nor grandeur can purchase ; and that blessing was a 

In this place for a year past had resided a sprightly, good, and 
sensible woman, called Margaret. She was born in Brittany 
of a plain family of peasants, by whom she was beloved, and 
who would have rendered her happy, had she not been weak 
enough to repose confidence in the professions of love of a man 
of family in the neighbourhood, who had px-omised to marry 
her ; but who, having gratified his passion, abandoned her, and 
even refused to secure to her the means of subsistence for the 
child with which he had left her pregnant. She immediately 
resolved for ever to quit the village where she wa^born, and to 
conceal her frailty in the Colonies, far from her country, where 
she had lost the only dowry of a poor and honest young'woman, 
reputation. An old black fellow, whom she had purchased with 
a poor borrowed purse, cultivated with her a small corner of 
this district. 

Madame de la Tour, attended by her black woman, found 
ugaret in this place, who was suckling her child. She was 
delighted to meet with a female, in a situation which she ac- 
counted somewhat similar to her own. She unfolded, in a few 
words, her former condition, and her present wants. Margaret^ 
on hearing Madame de la Tour's story, was moved with com- 
passion, and wishing to merit her confidence rather than her es- 
teem, she confessed to her without reserve the imprudence of 
which she had been guilty : " For my part," said she, " I have 

kC merited my destiny, but you, Madam , virtuous and 

" unfortunate I" Here/with tears in her eyes, she tendered to 
the stranger the accommodations of her cottage, and her friend- 
hap. Madame de la Tour, deeply affected with a reception so 
nder, folded her in her arm?, exclaiming, " I see that GOD 


« is going to put an end to my sufferings, since he has inspired 
" you with sentiments of greater kindness to me, an entire 
" stranger, than I ever received from my own relations." 

I had the felicity of Margaret's acquaintance ; and though I 
live at the distance of a league and a half from hence, in the 
woods, behind the long mountain, I looked upon myself as her 
neighbour. In the cities of Europe, a street, a simple partition, 
separates the members of the same family for years ; but in the 
now Colonies, we consider as neighbours those who are only se- 
parated from us by woods and by mountains. At that time par- 
ticularly, when this island had little commerce with India, neigh- 
bourhood alone was a title to friendship, and hospitality to stran- 
gers was considered as a duty and a pleasure. 

As soon as I learnt that my neighbour had got a companion 
I went to see her, in order to offer to both all the assistance in 
my power. I found in Madame de la Tour a person of a very 
interesting figure ; majestic, and melancholy. She was then very 
near her time. I said to these two ladies, that it would be better, 
for the sake of the interests of their children, and especially to 
prevent the Establishment of any other settler, to divide between 
them the territory of this bason, which contains about twenty 
acres. They entrusted me with the care of making this division ; 
I formed it into two portions nearly equal. The one contained 
the upper part of that enclosure, from yonder point of the rock 
covered with clouds, from whence issues the source of the river 
of the Lataniers, to that steep opening which you see at the top 
of the mountain, and which is called the Embrasure, because 
it actually resembles the parapet of a battery. The bottom of this 
spot of jjround is so filled with rocks and gutters, that it is scarce- 
ly possible to walk along. It nevertheless produces large trees, 
and abounds with fountains and little rivulets. In the other por- 
tion, I comprized all the lower part of the enclosure, which ex- 
tends along the river of the Lataniers, to the opening where we 
now are, from whence that river begins to flow between two hills 
toward the Sea. You there see some stripes of meadow-ground, 
and a soil tolerably smooth and level, but which is very little 
better than the other ; for in the rainy season it is marshy, and in 
drought stiff as lead. When you wish in that case to open 'c. 
trench, you are obliged to cut it with a hatchet. 


After having made these two divisions, I persuaded the ladies 
to settle their respective possessions by casting lots. The upper 
part fell to the share of Madame de la Tour, and the lower to 
Margaret. They were both perfectly satisfied ; but requested 
me not to separate their habitations, " in order," said they to 
me, " that we may always have it in our power to see, to con- 
" verse with, and to assist each other." It was necessary how- 
ever that each of them should have a separate retreat. The cot- 
tage of Margaret was built in the middle of the bason, exactly 
upon the boundary of her own domain. I built close to it, upon 
that of Madame de la Tour, another cottage ; so that these two 
friends were at once in the vicinity of each other, and on the 
property of their families. I myself cut palisadoes in the moun- 
tain, and brought the leaves of the Latanier from the sea-side, 
to construct these two cottages, which now no longer present 
either door or roof. Alas ! there still remains but too much for 
my recollection. Time which destroys, with so much rapidity, 
the monuments of empires, seems to respect in these deserts 
those of friendship, in order to perpetuate my affliction to the last 
hour of my life. 

Scarcely was the second of the cottages completed, when Ma- 
dame de la Tour was delivered of a daughter. I had been the 
god-father of Margaret's child, who was called Paid. Madame 
de la Tour begged me to name her daugher also, in conjunction 
with her friend, who gave her the name of Virginia. " She will 
" be virtuous," said she, " and she will be happy: I knew cala- 
" mity only in ceasing to be virtuous." 

When Madame de la Tour was recovered of her lying-in, 
these two little habitations began to wear the appearance of com- 
fort, with the assistance of the labour which I occasionally be- 
stowed upon them; but particularly by the assiduous labour of 
their slaves : that of Margaret, called Domingo, was an Iolof 
Black, still robust though rather advanced in life. He possessed 
the advantage of experience and good natural sense. He culti- 
vated, without distinction, on the two districts, the soil which 
appeared to him the most fertile, and there he sowed the seeds 
which he thought would thrive the best in it. He sowed small 
millet and Indian corn in places where the soil was of an inferior 
quality, and a little wheat where the ground was good. In marshv 


places he sowed rice, and at the foot of the rocks were raised 
giraumonts, gourds, and cucumbers, which delight in climbing 
up their sides: in diy places, he planted potatoes, which there 
acquire singular sweetness ; cotton-trees on heights, sugar-canes 
on strong land ; coffee plants on the hills, where their grains are 
small, but of an excellent quality; along the river, and around 
the cottages, he planted bananas, which all the year round pro- 
duce large supplies of fruit, and form a beautiful shelter ; and 
finally, some plants of tobacco, to soothe his own cares and those 
of his good mistresses. He went to cut wood for fuel in the 
mountain, and broke down pieces of rock here and there in the 
plantation, to smooth the roads. He performed all these labours 
with intelligence and activity, because he performed them with 
zeal. He was very much attached to Margaret, and not much 
less so to Madame de la Tour, whose slave he had married at 
the birth of Virginia. He passionately loved his wife, whose 
name was Mary. She was a native of Madagascar, from whence 
she had brought some degree of skill, particularly the art of mak- 
ing baskets, and stuffs called pagrties, with the grass which grows 
in the woods.' She was clever, cleanly, and what was above all 
incorruptibly faithful. Her employment was to prepare the vic- 
tuals, to take care of some poultry, and to ,go occasionally to 
Port-Louis to sell the superfluity of the two plantations ; this 
however was very inconsiderable. If to these you add two goats, 
brought up with the children, and a great dog that watched the 
dwellings during the night, you will have an idea of all the pos- 
sessions, and of all the domestic economy, of these two little 

As for the two friends, they spun cotton from morning till 
night. This employment was sufficient to maintain themselves | 
and their families ; but in other respects they were so ill pro- 
vided with foreign commodities, that they walked bare-footed 
Avhen at home, and never wore shoes except on Sundays when 
they went to mass early in the morning, to the church of Pam- 
plemousscs which you see in the bottom. It is nevertheless 
much farther than to Port Louis ; but they seldom visited the 
city, for fear of being treated with contempt, because they were 
dressed in the coarse blue linen cloth of Bengal which is worn 
by slaves. After all, is public respectability half so valuable 

Vor.. III. B 


as domestic felicity ? If these ladies were exposed to a little 
suffering when abroad, they returned home with so much more 
additional satisfaction. No sooner had Mary and Domingo 
perceived them from this eminence, on the road from Pample- 
mousses, than they flew to the bottom of the mountain, to assist 
them in re-ascending it. They read in the eyes of their slaves 
the jov which they felt at seeing them again. They found in 
their habitation cleanliness and freedom, blessings which they 
owed entirely to their own industry, and to servants animated 
with zeal and affection. As for themselves, united by the same 
wants, having experienced evils almost similar, giving to each 
other the tender names of friend, companion and sister, they had 
but one will, one interest, one table. They had every thing in 
common. And if it sometimes happened that former senti- 
ments, more ardent than those of friendship, were re-kindled in 
their bosoms, a pure and undefiled Religion, assisted by chaste 
manners, directed them toward another life, like the flame 
which flies off to Heaven when it ceases to find nourishment on 
the Earth. 

The duties of nature were besides an additional source of 
happiness to their society. Their mutual friendship redoubled 
at the sight of their children, the fruits of a love equally unfor- 
tunate. They took delight to put theni into the same bath, and 
to lay them to sleep in the same cradle. They frequently ex- 
changed their milk to the children ; " My friend," said Ma- 
dame dc la Tour, " each of us will have two children, and each 
"of our children will have two mothers." Like two buds which 
remain upon two trees of the same species, all the branches of 
which have been broken by the tempest, produce fruits more 
delicious, if each of them, detached from the maternal stock, is 
grafted on the neighbouring stem ; thus these two little chil- 
dren, deprived of their relations, were filled with sentiments to- 
ward each other more tender than those of son and daughter, 
of brother and sister, when they were exchanged at the breast 
by the two friends who had given them being. Already their 
mothers talked of their marriage, though they were yet in the 
cradle, and this prospect of conjugal felicitv, with which they 
soothed their own woes to peace, frequently terminated in a 
flood of tears j the one recollecting the miseries which she had 


suffered from having neglected the forms of marriage, and the 
other from having submitted to it's laws ; the one from having 
been raised above her condition ; and the other from having 
descended below hers ; but they consoled themselves with the 
thought that the day would come, when their children, more 
fortunate than themselves, would enjoy at once, far from the 
cruel prejudices of Europe, the pleasures of love and the happi- 
ness of equality. 

Nothing indeed was to be compared with the attachment 
which the babes betimes testified for each other : If Paul 
happened to complain, they shewed Virginia to him ; at the 
sight of her he smiled and was pacified. If Virginia suffered, 
you were informed of it by the lamentations of Paul ; but this 
amiable child immediately concealed her pain, that her suffer- 
ings might not distress him. I never arrived here, that I did 
not see them both entirely naked, according to the custom of 
the country, scarcely able to walk, holding each other by the 
hands, and under the arms, as the constellation of the Twins is 
represented. Night itself had not the power of separating 
them ; it frequently surprized them, laid in the same cradle, 
cheek joined to cheek, bosom to bosom, their hands mutually 
passed round each other's neck, and asleep in one another's arms. 

When they were able to speak, the first names which thev 
learned to pronounce was that of brother and sister. Infancv, 
which bestows caresses more tender, knows of no names more 
sweet. Their education only served to redouble their friend- 
ship, by directing it toward their reciprocal wants. Very soon 
every thing that concerned domestic economy, cleanliness, the 
care of preparing a ^rural repast, became the province of Virgi- 
nia, and her labours were always followed by the praises and 
caresses of Paul. As for him, ever in motion, he digged in the 
garden with Domingo, or with a little hatchet in his hand fol- 
lowed him into the woods ; and if in these rambles a beautiful 
flower, a delicious fruit, or a nest of birds, came in his way, 
though at the top of the highest tree, he scaled it to bring them 
to his sister. 

When you chanced to meet one of them, you might be certain 
the other was not far off. One day that I was descending from 
the summit of this mountain, I perceived Virginia at the ex- 


tremity of the garden ; she was running toward the house, hei 
head covered with her petticoat which she had raised behind, to 
shelter her from a deluge of rain. At a distance I thought she 
had been alone ; and having advanced to assist her, I perceived 
that she held jP^ul by the arm, who was almost enveloped in the 
same covering ; both of them delighted at finding themselves 
sheltered together under an umbrella of their own invention. 
These two charming heads, wrapt up in the swelling petticoat, 
reminded me of the children of Leda enclosed in the same shell. 
All their study was to please and to assist each other ; in every 
other respect they were as ignorant as Creoles, and neither knew 
how to read or write. They did not disturb themselves about 
what had happened in former times, and at a distance from 
them ; their curiosity did not extend beyond this mountain. 
They believed that the world ended at the extremity of their isl- 
and, and they could not form an idea of an)- thing beautiful where 
they were not. Their mutual affections and that of their mo- 
thers engaged every feeling of their hearts : never had useless 
science caused their tears to flow ; never had the lessons of a 
gloomy morality oppressed them with languor. They knew not 
that it was Unlawful to steal, every thing with them being in 
common ; nor to be intemperate, having always at command 
plenty of simple food: nor to utter falsehood, having no truths 
that it was necessary to conceal. They had never been terrified 
with the idea that GOD has in store dreadful punishments for 
ungrateful children ; with them filial duty was born of maternal 
affection : they had been taught no other religion than that which 
instructs us to love one another ; and if they did not offer up 
long prayers at church, wherever they were, in the house, in the 
iieHs, or in the woods, they raised toward Heaven innocent 
hands and pure hearts, filled with the love of their parents. 

Thus passed their early infancy, like a beautiful dawn which 
eems to promise a still more beautiful day. They already di- 
vided with their mothers the cares of the household : as soon as 
owing of the cock announced the return of Aurora, Vir- 
ginia rose, went to draw water at the neighbouring fountain, and 
returned to the house to prepare breakfast : soon after, when 
the sun had gilded the peaks of that enclosure, Margaret and 
her son went to the dwelling of Madame ds la Tour, where they 


immediately began a prayer, which was followed by their first 
repast ; this they frequently partook of before the door seated 
on the grass, under a bower of bananas, which furnished them 
at the same time with ready-prepared food, in their substantial 
fruit, and table-linen in their long and glittering leaves. 

Wholesome and plentiful nourishment rapidly expanded the 
bodies of these young persons, and a mild education painted in 
their physiognomies the purity and contentment of their souls. 
Virginia was only twelve years old ; already her person was 
more than half formed ; a large quantity of beautiful flaxen hair 
ornamented her head ; her blue eyes and coral lips shone with 
the mildest lustre on the bloom of her countenance : they al- 
ways smiled in concert when she spoke, but when she was silent, 
their natural obliquity toward Heaven gave them an expression 
of extreme sensibility, and even a slight tendency to melancholy. 
As for Paul, you might already see in him the character of a 
man, possessing all the graces of youth ; his figure was taller 
than that of Virginia, his complexion darker, and his nose more 
aquiline : his eyes, which were black, would have possessed a 
certain degree of haughtiness, if the long eye -lashes which sur- 
rounded them, and which resembled the fine strokes of a pencil, 
had not given them the greatest sweetness. Though he was 
almost continually in motion, the moment his sister appeared he 
became tranquil, and seated himself beside her ; their meal fre- 
quently passed without a word being uttered : their silence, the 
simplicity of their attitudes, the beauty of their naked feet, 
would have tempted you to believe that you beheld an antique 
groupe of white marble, representing the children of Niche : but 
when you beheld their looks, which seemed desirous to meet 
each other, their smiles returned with smiles still sweeter, you 
would have taken them for those children of Heaven, those bles- 
sed spirits, whose nature is love ; and who have no need of 
thought to make their feelings known, nor of words to express 
their affection. 

In the mean time, Madame de la Tour perceiving that hei 
liter advanced in life with so many charms, felt her unea- 
siness increase with her tenderness : she used to say sometime 
to me, " If I should chance to die, what would become of Vir 
" ginia, dowerless as she is 


She had an aunt in France, a woman of quality, rich, old, and 
a devotee, who had refused her assistance in a manner so un- 
feeling, when she married de la Tour, that she resolved never 
to have recourse to her again, to whatever extremity she might 
be reduced. But now that she was become a mother, she no 
longer dreaded the shame of a refusal : she acquainted her aunt 
with the unexpected death of her husband, the birth of her 
daughter, and the embarrassment of her affairs ; being destitute 
of support, and burdened with a child. She however received 
no answer ; but, being a woman of exalted character, she no 
longer feared humiliation, nor the reproaches of her relation, 
who had never forgiven her for having married a man of low 
birth, though virtuous. She continued therefore to write to her 
aunt by every opportunity, in the hope of raising in her breast 
some favourable emotions toward Virginia : many years how- 
ever elapsed before she received from her any token of remem- 

At length, in the year 1746, on the arrival of M. de laBour- 
donaye, Madame de la Tour was informed that their new Go- 
vernor had a letter to deliver to her from her aunt. She im- 
mediately ran to Port-Louis, for this once entirely indifferent 
about appearing in her coarse habit ; maternal love raising her 
above respect to the World. M. de la Bourdonaye delivered 
her aunt's letter, which insinuated that she merited her condi- 
tion, for having married an adventurer, a libertine ; that the 
passions always carried their punishment along with them ; that 
the untimely death of her husband was a just chastisemet of 
GOD ; that she had done well to remain in the island, instead 
of dishonouring her family by returning to France ; and that 
after all she was in an excellent country, where every- body made 
fortunes, except the idle. After having thus reproached her, 
she concluded with making her own elogium ; to avoid, she 
said, the almost inevitable evils which attend matrimony, she had 
always refused to marry : the truth was, that, being very ambi- 
tious, she had refused to unite herself to any except a man of 
rank ; but although she was very rich, and that at Court every 
thing is a matter of indifference, fortune excepted, yet no person 
was found willing to form an alliance with a woman homely to 


the last degree, and at the same time possessed of a most unfeel- 
ing heart. 

She added, byway of postscript, that everything considered, 
she had strongly recommended her to M. de la Bourdonaye : 
■she had indeed recommended her, but, conformably to a custom 
but too prevalent at this day, which renders a protector more to 
be dreaded than a declared enemy, in order to justify to the 
Governor her severity to her niece, in feigning to pity she had 
calumniated her. 

Madame de la Tour, who could not be seen by the most in- 
different person without interest and respect, was received with 
the greatest coolness by M. de la Bourdonaye, thus prejudiced 
against her. To the account which she gave of her own situa- 
tion, and that of her daughter, he answered only by harsh mono- 
s) llables ; " I shall enquire,"...." we shall see,"...." in time,".... 
u there are many unhappy people,"...." why offend so respect- 
" able an aunt ?"...." you are certainly to blame." 

Madame de la Tour returned to the plantation, her heart 
oppressed with grief, and full of bitterness ; on her arrival she 
sat down, threw her aunt's letter on the table, and said to her 
friend, " Behold the fruits of eleven years patience." But as 
no one of the society knew how to read except Madame de la 
Tour, she took up the letter again and read it to all the family. 
Scarcely had she concluded, when Margaret said to her with 
vivacity, " What need have we of thy relations ? Has GOD for- 
" saken us ? He only is our father ; have we not lived happily 
" until this day ? Why then should you afflict yourself ? You 
" have no fortitude." Perceiving that Madame de la Tour wa. c 
much affected, she threw herself on her bosom, folded her in 
her arms and exclaimed, " My dear friend, my dear friend !' ; 
her own sobs quite choaked her voice. At this sight, Virginia 
melting into tears, alternately pressed the hands of her mother, 
and of Margaret, to her lips, and to her heart ; whilst Paul, hip. 
eyes inflamed with rage, exclaimed aloud, clenched his lists, 
stamped with his feet, not knowing how to vent his rage. At 
the noise which he made, Domingo and Mary ran in, and no- 
thing but exclamations of distress were heard in the cottage : 

" Ah, Madam !" " My good mistress!" " My dear mo- 

1 ther !"...." Do npt distress yourself." Such tender marks ol 


affection soon dissipated the anguish of Madame de la Tour : 
she embraced Paul and Virginia, and said to them with a look 
of satisfaction, " My dear children, you are the cause of my 
" tears, but you are also the source of all the happiness I enjoy : 
" Oh, my children, misfortune attacks me only from afar, feli- 
" city is ever around me." Paul and Virginia did not compre- 
hend what she said, but as soon as they saw that she was com- 
posed they smiled and caressed her. Thus was peace restored, 
and the past scene was only like a stormy cloud in the midst of 

The good dispositions of these children were unfolding them- 
selves from day to day. One Sunday about sun-rise, their 
mothers having gone to the first mass at the church of Pample- 
mousses, a fugitive negro-woman made her appearance, under 
the bananas which surrounded their plantation. She was as mea- 
gre as a skeleton, and without a bit of clothing except a shred of 
tattered canvas about her loins. She threw herself at Virginia's 
feet, who was preparing the family-breakfast, and thus addressed 
her: " My dear young lady, take pity on a miserable runaway 
" slave: for more than a month past I have been wandering 
" about these mountains, half-dead with famine, and frequently 
" pursued by the huntsmen and their dogs. I have fled from 
" my muster, who is a wealthy planter on the Black River: he 
" has treated me in the manner you see." 

In saying these words, she shewed her body deeply furrowed 
by the strokes of the whip which she had received; she added, 
w I had thoughts of drowning myself, but knowing that you lived 
" here, I thus inflected; perhaps there are still some good white 
" people in this country, I must not die yet." Virginia, much af- 
fected, replied, "Take comfort, unfortunate creature! eat, eat." 
Upon which she gave her the breakfast which she had prepared 
for the family. The slave in a few moments devoured the whole 
of it. Virginia, seeing her refreshed, said to her : " Poor wretch ! 
" I have a great desire to go to your master and implore your 
" pardon: at the sight of you he must be touched with compas- 
•• sion: will you conduct me to him r" — " Angel of GOD !" re- 
plied the negress, " I will follow you wherever you lead me." 
Virginia called her brother, and entreated him to accompany 
the fugitive slave conducted them by narrow paths to the 


middle of the woods, across high mountains over -which they 
scrambled with difficulty, and great rivers, which they forded. 
At length, toward noon, they arrived at the bottom of a moun- 
tain on the banks of the Black River. They there perceived a 
well-built house, considerable plantations, and a great number of 
slaves engaged in different occupations. The master was walk- 
ing in the midst of them, with a pipe in his mouth, and a ratan 
in his hand. He was a very tall, lean man, of an olive complexion, 
with his eyes sunk in his head, his eye-brows black and meeting- 
each other. Virginia, quite petrified, holding Paul by the arm, 
approached the man, and entreated him for the love of GOD to 
pardon his slave, who was a few paces behind them. The mas- 
ter, at first, did not pay much attention to these two children, 
who were but meanly clad; when however he had remarked the 
elegant form of Virginia, her beautiful flaxen hair, which ap- 
peared from under a blue hood, and when he had heard the 
sweet tones of her voice, which trembled as well as her body 
while she implored his forgiveness, he took the pipe from his 
mouth, and raising his ratan toward Heaven, declared with a 
terrible oath that he would pardon his slave, not for the love of 
GOD, but for the love of her. Virginia immediately made a 
sign for the slave to advance toward her master, and then ran 
away, with Paul running after her. 

They scrambled together up the steep declivity of the moun- 
tain, by which they had descended in the morning, and having 
arrived at it's summit, they seated themselves under a tree, ex- 
hausted with fatigue, hunger and thirst. They had travelled 
from the rising of the Sun, more than five leagues without hav- 
ing tasted food : Paul addressed Virginia thus: " Sister, it is 
" past mid-day, you are hungry, you are thirsty ; we shall find 
" no refreshment here, let us again descend the mountain, and 
1 request the master of the slave to give us something to eat." 
— " Oh, no ! my friend," replied Virginia, " he has terrified me 
" too much already. Do you not remember what mamma has 
u often said ; the bread of the -wicked Jills the mouth . 
'?"-*-« What shall we do then?" said Paul, " th 
" produce only bad fruits: there is not so much as a tamarind, 
<w or a lemon to refresh you." — u GOD will have pi 
returned Virginia, " he hears the voice of the little birds which 
<. III. C 


" call to him for food." Scarcely had she pronounced these words 
when they heard the bubbling of a fountain which fell from a 
neighbouring rock : they immediately ran to it, and after having 
quenched their thirst with water more clear than the crystal, 
the y gathered and eat a few of the cresses which grew upon it's 
banks. As they were anxiously looking about from side to side, 
to see if they could not find some more substantial food, Virginia 
perceived among the trees of the forest a young palm-tree. The 
colewort which is inclosed in the leaves that grow on the top of 
this tree is very good to eat ; but though it's trunk was not thick- 
er than a man's leg, it was more than sixty feet high. The wood 
of this tree indeed is only formed of a bundle of filaments, but 
it's pith is so hard that it resists the edge of the keenest hatchet, 
and Paul had not so much as a knife. The idea occurred to him 
of setting fire to the palm-tree, but here again he was at a loss; 
lit hod no steel; and besides in this island, so covered with rock, 
I do not believe that a single flint stone is to be found. Neces- 
sity produces industry, and the most useful inventions are 
quently to be ascribed to the most miserable of mankind. Paul 
resolved to kindle a fire in the same manner that the blacks do. 
With the sharp point of a stone he bored a little hole in the 
branch of a tree that was very dry, which he mastered by press- 
ing it under his feet: he then, with the edge of this stone, made 
a point to another branch equally dry, but of a different species 
of wood. Afterwards he applied this piece of pointed wood 
to the little hole of the branch which was under his feet, and 
spinning ic round with great rapidity between his hands, as you 
trundle round the mill with which chocolate is frothed up, in a 
few moments he saw smoke and sparks issue from the point of 
contact. He then gathered together some dry herbage, and 
other branches of trees, and applied the fire to the root of the 
palm-tree, which presently fell with a terrible crash. This fire 
likewise assisted him in peeling off from the colewort it's long, 
' ligneous and prickly leaves. Virginia and he ate a part of his 
cabbage raw, and the other part dressed upon the ashes, and 
found them equally savoury. They enjoyed this frugal repast 
with the highest satisfaction, from the recollection of the good 
action which they had performed in the mo- ning ; but their jo^, 
was greatly damped, by the uneasiness which hev had not a doubl 


i- long absence must have occasioned to their parents. Virgi- 
recurred frequently to this subject, while Paul, who now felt 
his strength restored, assured her that it would not be long be- 
fore they got home to quiet the anxiety of their mothers. 

After dinner they found themselves much embarrassed, for 
they had no longer a guide to direct them homewards. Paid, 
who was disconcerted at nothing, said to Virginia, " Our cot- 
" tage looks toward the noon-day Sun, we must therefore pass 
" as we did this morning, over that mountain which you see be- 
" low with it's three peaks. Come, let us walk on, my friend." 
This mountain is called the Three Paps,* because it's three peaks 
have that form. They descended then the gloomy declivity of 
the Black River toward the north, and arrived, after an hour's 
walking, at the banks of a considerable river which barred their 
progress. That large portion of the island, entirely covered with 
forests, is so little known even at this day, that many of it's ri- 
vers and mountains are still without a name. The river, upon 
the banks of which they were, flows impetuously over a bed of 
rocks. The noise of it's waters terrified Virginia; she durst not 
venture to put her feet into it for the purpose of fording over. 
Paul upon this took Virginia on his back ; and thus laden passed 
over the slippery rocks of the river, in spite of the tumult of the 
waves. " Be not afraid," said he to her, " I feel mv strength 
" renewed, having the charge of you. If the phnter of the Black 
u River had refused to your entreaties the pardon of his slave 
" I should have fought with him." " How !" exclaimed Virgi- 
nia, " with that man, so large, and so wicked? To what have I 
" exposed you? My God! how difficult a thing it is to act pro- 
" perly ! Evil alone is performed with facility!" 

When Paul had arrived on the farther side he was desirous of 
continuing the journey, laden as he was with the weight of his sis- 

* There arc many mountains, the summits of which are rounded into the 
form of a woman's breast, and bear that name in all lauguag-es. They arc in- 
real paps ; for from them issue multitudes of brooks and rivers, which 
diffuse abundance over the face of the Earth. They are the sources of the 
principal streams which water it, and furnish them with a constant supply, 
•<\ continually attracting- the clouds around the peak of the rock, which 
tops them at the centre, like a nipple. We have indicated those wonderful 

ceding' Studies 


ter, and he flattered himself that he should be able thus to ascend 
the mountain of the Three Paps, which he saw before him at the 
distance of a league and a half, under the same burden with which 
he had crossed the river ; but his strength very soon failed, and 
he was obliged to set her on the ground, and repose himself by 
her side. Virginia then said to him, " Brother, the day is de- 
" dining fast, you have still some strength remaining, but mine 
" entirely fails ; suffer me to remain here, and do you return 
alone to our cottage to restore tranquillity to our mothers." " Oh 
" no!" said Paul, " I will ncvci leave you. If the night should 
• surprize us in these woods, I will light a fire, I will fell these 
" palm-trees, vou shall eat the colewort, and I will make of it's 
" leaves an ajoupa to shelter you." Virginia however being 
a little revived, gathered from the trunk of an old tree which 
grew upon the edge of the river, long leaves of the scolopendra, 
which hung down from it's boughs. She made of these a spe- 
cies of sandals, which she put on her feet ; for they were wounded 
to bleeding by the sharp stone which covered the road. In her 
eagerness to do good she had forgot to put on shoes. Feeling 
herself relieved by the freshness of these leaves, she broke off a 
branch of bamboo, and proceeded on her journey, resting one 
hand on this reed, and the other on her brother. They thus 
walked slowly on through the woods ; but the height of the 
trees, and the thickness of their foliage, soon made them lose 
sight of the Three Paps, to which they were directing their 
course, and even of the Sun, which was near setting. After 
some time they strayed, without perceiving it, from the beaten 
path which they had hitherto pursued, and found themselves in 
a labyrinth of trees, of lianes, and of rocks which had no outlet. 
Paul made Virginia sit down, and ran about quite distracted, 
:n quest of a road that might lead them out of this maze, but he 
fatigued himself in vain. He scrambled to the top of a large 
tree, with the hope of discovering at least the mountain of the 
Three Paps, but he could perceive nothing around r an except 
the summits of trees, some of which were gilded by th last rays 
of the seating Sun. In the mean time the shadow of the moun- 
tains had already covered the forests in the valleys ; the Avind 
was hushed, as it usually is at the setting of the Sun ; a profound 
si] ;e reigned in these solitudes, and no other sound was to be 


heard but the braying of the deer, which came to seek a place 
pose for the night in these wild retreats. Paul, in the hope 
i hat some huntsman might hear his voice, then called out with 
all his might; " Come, come to the relief of Virginia:'' 1 but the 
only answer he received was from the solitary echoes of the for- 
which repeated at intervals," Virginia! Virginia!" 
Paul at length descended from the tree, oppressed with fa- 
tigue and vexation ; he meditated on the means of passing the 
night in this place ; but there was neither fountain nor palm-tree 
to'be found in it ; nor even so much as branches of dry wood 
proper to kindle a fire. He then felt from experience the ineffi- 
cacy of his resources, and began to weep. Virginia said to him, 
" Do not distress yourself, my friend, if you would not wish to 
" see me overwhelmed with grief. It is I who am the cause of 
" all your sufferings, and of those which our mothers now en- 
u dure. We ought to do nothing without consulting our pa- 
" rents, no, not even what is right. Oh! I have been very im- 
" prudent!" Thus saying, she burst into tears. In the mean 
time she said to Paul, " Let us pray to GOD, my brother, and 
" he will take compassion on us." Scarcely had they finished 
their prayer when they heard a dog bark. " It is," said Paul, 
" the dog of some huntsman, who comes of an evening to kill 
" the deer in their retreat." A short time after the barking of 
the dog redoubled. " I have an idea," said Virginia, that it is 
" Fidele our cottage dog : yes, I recollect his voice : Is it pos- 
" sible that we should be so near our journey's end, and at the 
" foot of our own mountain:" In truth, a moment afterwards, 
Fidele was at their feet, barking, howling, groaning, and load- 
ing them with caresses. Before they had recovered from their 
surprize they perceived Domingo, who was running toward 
them. At the sight of th; negro, who wept with joy, 

tlay also shed tears, without being able to say one word. When 
Domingo had a little recovered himself: " Oh, my young mas- 
ters," said he to them, " what distress your mothers are in! 
" how astonished they were at not finding you on their return 
M from mass, whither I had accompanied them! Mary, who wa i J 
" at work in a corner of the plantation, could not tell whither 
u you were gone : I wandered about the grounds, not knowing 
u myself where to seek you: At length, I took the old clo 


" which you used to wear ;* I made Fidele smell to them ; and 
" as if the poor animal had understood me, he immediately set 
" off to trace your steps. He conducted me, always wagging 
" his tail, to the Black River. There I was informed by a plan- 
" ter that you had brought a fugitive slave back to him, and 
" that he pardoned her at your intercession. But what a par- 
41 don ! he showed her to me, fastened with a chain round her 
" foot to a log of wood, and an iron collar with three rings round 
" her neck. From thence, Fidele following the scent, conducted 
" me to the Mount of the Black River, where he again stopped, 
" and barked as loud as he was able. It was on the brink of a 
" fountain near a palm-tree which had been levelled, and a fire 
" not quite extinguished ; at length he conducted me to this 
" place. We are at the foot of the mountain of the Three Paps, 
" and it is still four good leagues from our dwelling. Come on, 
" eat and recruit your strength." He then presented to them a 
cake, some fruit, and a large gourd bottle filled with a liquor 
compounded of water, wine, lemon-juice, sugar, and nutmeg, 
which their mothers had prepared to strengthen and revive 
them. Virginia sighed at the recollection of the poor slave, and 
at the distress of their mothers. She repeated several times, 
u Oh, how difficult it is to do good !" 

While Paul and she were refreshing themselves Domingo 
lighted a fire, and looking about among the rocks for a crooked 
billet, which we call round-wood, and which bums even in the 
sap, throwing out a very bright flame, he made a flambeau of 
it, and set it a-burning ; for it was now quite dark. But he had 
to encounter a much greater difficulty. When all was ready 
for proceeding forward, Paul and Virginia were absolutely in- 
capable of walking any farther ; their feet being swelled and 
raw all over. Domingo was completely puzzled ; he could not 
determine whether it would be more advisable for him to ram- 
ble about in quest of assistance, or to prepare for passing the 
night with them where they were. " Whither has the time 
" fled," said he to them, " when I carried you both at once in 
" my arms ? But now you are increased in stature, and I am 

* This trait of sagacity in the black Domingo, and his dog Fidele, very much 
resembles that of the savage Teviemua and his dog- Oniha, mentioned bv M 
b Crevecmvr, in his humane 


" old." While he was reduced to this state of perplexity, a 
company ot run-away negroes appeared, about twenty paces dis- 
tant. The leader of the troop, approaching Paul and Virginia, 
thus addressed them : " Good little Whites, be not afraid : 
" we saw you this morning passing along in company with a 
" negress of the Llack River ; you were going to solicit her 
" pardon of a cruel master ; out of gratitude we will carry you 
" home upon our shoulders." Upon this he made a sign, and 
four of the stoutest black fellows immediately formed a litter 
with boughs of trees and lianes, placed Paul and Virginia upon 
it, hoisted them upon their shoulders, and, Domingo mai 
before them with his flambeau, they took the road amidst che 
joyful acclamations of the whole company, who loaded them 
with benedictions. Virginia, quite owcome, whispered to 
" Paul: Oh, my dear friend ! GOD never permits a goou ac- 
" tion to go unrewarded." 

About midnight they arrived at the bottom of their own 
mountain, the ridges of which were illumined with various 
fires. Scarcely had they got to the top, when they heard voices 
calling aloud : " Is it you, my children V The blacks and they 
replied together : " Yes, yes, here we are !" and presently they 
perceived their mothers and Mary coming to meet them with 
flaming torches. "Unhappy children!" exclaimed Madame 
dt la lour, " Whence come you i Into what agonies have 
" thrown us !" " We come," replied Virginia, " from the lilack 
" River, whither we went this morning to implore the pardon 
" of a poor fugitive negress, to whom I likewise gave the fami- 
" ly breakfast, for she was just perishing with hunger; and here, 
" the black run-aways have carried us home again." Madame 
de la Tour tenderly embraced her daughter, utterly deprived ol 
the power of speech ; and Virginia, who felt her own face mois- 
tened with her mother's tears, said to her : " How vou repa\ 
" me for all that I have suffered !" Margaret, transported with 
delight, locked Paul in her arms, saying : M And thou too, my 
" son, thou hast performed a good action!" Being arrived at 
their cottage with the children, they gave a plentiful supper to 
the black guides, who returned to the woods expressing a thou- 
sand good wishes for their prosnentv. 


Every succeeding day was to these families a day of happi- 
ness and tranquillity. They were strangers to the torments ol 
envy and of ambition. They coveted not, from abroad, that 
vain reputation which is purchased by intrigue, and which the 
breath of calumny destroys. It was sufficient for them to be in 
the place of witness and of judge to each other. In this island 
where, as in all the European Colonies, no curiosity is expres- 
sed except in hunting after malicious anecdotes, their virtues, 
nay their very names, were unknown. Only, when a passenger 
happened to ask on the road to Pamplemousses, of one of the 
inhabitants of the plain : " Who lives in yonder cottages on the 
" top of the hill ?" the answer returned, without pretending to 
any farther knowledge of them, was: "They are good people." 
Thus the violets, fro^ronder the prickly shrubbery, exhale at a 
distance their fragrant perfume, though they remain unseen. 

They had banished from their conversation the practice of 
evil-speaking, which under an appearance of justice, necessarily 
disposes the heart to hatred or to falsehood ; for it is impossible 
to refrain from hating men if we believe them to be wicked ; 
or to live with the wicked unless you conceal your hatred of 
them under false appearances of benevolence. Evil-speaking, 
accordingly, lays us under the necessity of being upon bad terms 
: v ith others, or with ourselves. But without sitting in judg- 
ment on men, in particular, they entertained one another only 
in devising the means of doing good to all in general; and 
though they possessed not the power, they had an invariable 
disposition this way, which animated them with a benevolence 
at all times ready to extend itself in an outward direction. By 
living therefore in solitude, so far from degenerating into sava- 
ges, they had become more humane. If the scandalous history 
of Society did not supply them with matter of conversation, 
that pf Nature replenished their hearts with transports of won- 
der and delight. They contemplated with rapture the power 
of that Providence which, by their hands, had diffused amidst 
diese barren rocks abundance, gracefulness, pleasures pure, sim- 
ple and perpetually renewing themselves. 

Paul, at the age of twelve, more vigorous and more intelligent 
lhan Europeans in general are at fifteen, had embellished what 
he Negro Domingo onlv cultivated. He went with him to the 


adjoining woods, to take up by the roots the young plants of 
a and orange-trees, of the tamarinds, whose round head 
is ot such a beautiful green, and of the aiticr, whose fruit is 
stored with a sugary cream which emits the perfume of the 
orange-flower. He planted these trees, after they had attained 
a considerable stature, all around this enclosure. He had there 
sown the grains of such trees as, from the second year and up- 
ward, bear flowers or fruits, as the agathis, from which depend 
circularly, like the crystal pendants of lustre, long cluster", of 
white flowers ; the Persian lilach which raises straight into the 
air it's gray, flaxen girandoles ; the papayer, whose branchless 
trunk, formed like a column, bristled all over with green melons, 
carries aloft a chapiter of broad leaves resembling those of the 

He had likewise planted in it the kernels and the nuts of the 
badamier, of the mango, of the avocatier, of the goyavicr, of the 
jacqs, and of the jamrose. Most of these trees already yielded 
to their young master both shade and fruit. His industrious 
hand had diffused fecundity even over the most steril spot of 
the enclosure. Aloes of various kinds, the raquet, loaded with 
yellow flowers striped with red, the prickly tapers arose on the 
dusky summits of the rocks, and seemed desirous of mounting 
up to the lianes, garnished with blue or scarlet flowers, which 
hung down here and there along the precipices of the mountain. 

He had disposed these vegetables in such a manner that you 
could enjoy the sight of them by a single glance of die eve. He 
had planted in the middle of the bason, the herbage, which 
grows to no great height, after that the shrubbery, dien the trees 
of small stature, and last of all the great trees which garnished 
it's circumference ; so that this vast enclosure appeared, from 
it's centre, like an amphitheatre of verdure, of fruits and flow- 
containing pot-herbs, stripes of meadow -ground, and fields 
of rice and corn. But in subjecting thus the vegetable king- 
dom to his plan, he had not deviated from the plans of Nature. 
Directed by the indications which she vouchsafes to give, he 
had placed in elevated situations the plants whose seeds are vo- 
latile, and by the side of the waters those whose grains are 
adapted to floating. Thus each vegetable grew in it's proper 
site, and each ived from it's vegetable it's natural <i 

Vol. III. D 


The streams, which descended from the summit of these rocks, 
formed below in the valley, here fountains, there broad and ca- 
pacious mirrors, which reflected in the midst of the verdure, the 
trees in bloom, the rocks, and the azure of the Heavens. 

Notwithstanding the great irregularity of the soil, these plan- 
tations were for the most part as accessible to the foot as to the 
eye. In truth, we all assisted him with our advice, and with 
our exertions, in order to accomplish his purpose. He had 
traced a path which winded round the bason, and of which se- 
veral ramifications converged from the circumference to meet at 
the centre. He had availed himself of the most rugged places 
of his domain, and united, by a harmony the most delicious, fa- 
cility of walking with the asperity of the soil, and domestic with 
forest trees. Of that enormous quantity of rolling stones, which 
now obstruct these roads as well as mar the greatest part of the 
surface of this island, he had formed in various places huge py- 
ramids, in the layers of which he had mixed with earth, and 
the roots of rose-trees, the poincillade and other shrubs, which 
take pleasure in the rocks. In a very short time, these gloomy 
ami inanimate piles were covered with verdure, or with the 
dn ' ' ling lustre of the most beautiful flowers. The cavities worn 
by the torrent in the sides of the mountain, bordered with aged 
trees inclined toward each other, formed arched subterraneans 
inaccessible to the heat, to which they retired for coolness dur- 
ing the sultry ardor of the meridian Sun. A narrow path con- 
ducted into a thicket of wild trees, at the centre of which grew, 
sheltered from the winds, a household-tree loaded with fruit. 
There was a cornfield whitening to the harvest ; here an or- 
chard. Through this avenue you could see the houses ; through 
that the inaccessible summits of the mountain. Under a tufted 
grove of tatamaques, interlaced with lianes, no one object was 
distinguishable even in the brightness of noon-day. On the 
point of that great rock adjoining, which juts out of the moun- 
tain, you could discern all those contained within the enclosure, 
with the Sea at a distance, on which sometimes appeared a ves- 
sel arriving from Europe, or returning thither. On this rock 
it was that the two families assembled of an evening, and en 
joyed in silence the coolness of the air, the fragrance of the 


flowers, the bubbling of the fountains, and the last harmonies of 
light and shade. 

Nothing could be more agreeable than the names imposed on 
the greatest part of the charming retreats of this labyrinth. The 
rock of which I have just now been speaking, from whence they 
could discern my approach at a considerable distance, was cal- 
led Friendship's Discovery. Paul and Virginia, in their spor- 
tiveness, had planted a bamboo upon it, on the summit of which 
they hoisted a small white handkerchief, as a signal of my arri- 
val as soon as they perceived me ; in imitation of the riag which 
is displayed on the neighbouring mountain on seeing a vessel at 
Sea. I took a fancy to engrave an inscription on the stem of 
this reed. Whatever pleasure I may have enjoyed in the course 
of my travels, in contemplating a statue, or a monument of An- 
tiquity, I have enjoyed still more in perusing a well-conceived 
inscription. It seems to me, in that case, as if a human voice 
issued out of the stone, made itself audible through the mighty 
void of ages, and addressing itself to Man in the midst of de- 
serts, told him that he was not alone ; and that other men, in 
these very places, had felt, thought, and suffered like himself. 
Should it happen to be the inscription of some ancient Nation, 
which subsists no longer, it conveys our soul into the regions of 
infinity, and communicates to it the sentiment of it's own im- 
mortality, by shewing that a thought has outlived the ruins even 
of an Empire. 

I inscribed then on the little mast which carried the flag of 
Paul and Virginia, these verses of Horace : 

....Fratrcs Helens, lucida sidera, 

Ventorumque regal Pater, 
Obstrictia aliis, prxter lapyga.* 

" May the brothers of Helen, stars radiant like yourselves, 
rt and may the Ruler of the winds direct your course ; binding 
!i up every ruder blast, and filling your sails onlv with the breath 
« of the Zephyr." 

* Thus imitated .- 
May Helen's brothers, stars so bright, 
^nd JEolus guide your course aright, 
That, safe from erery ruder gale, 
f Zephyrs :done may sweti th 


I engraved the following line from Virgil, on the rind of a 
tatamaque, under the shade of which Paul sometimes sat down 
to contemplate from afar the agitated Ocean : 

Fortunatus & ille deos qui nova Heresies ! 

" Happy too is he in knowing no deities but those who make 
" the plains their care !" 

And that over the door of Madame de la Tour's cottage, which 
was the place of general rendezvous : 

At secura quies,& nescia fallera vita. 
" Peace undisturb'd, and hearts devoid of guile." 

But Virginia did not approve of my Latin ; she said that the 
inscription which I had placed below her weathercock, was too 
long and too learned. I should have rather preferred this, ad- 
ded she : always agitated, sut ever constant. That de- 
vice, replied I, is still better adapted to virtue. My observation 
excited a blush in her cheek. 

These happy families extended their benevolent dispositions 
to all that surrounded them. They bestowed the most tender 
ations on objects apparently the most indifferent. To an 
inclosure of orange-trees and bananas, planted in form of a circle 
round a portion of mossy ground, in the middle of which Paul 
and Virginia sometimes used to dance, they gave the name of 
The Concord. An ancient tree, under the shade of which Ma- 
dame de la Tour and Margaret related to each other their mis- 
fortunes, was called The Tears wiped away. They gave the 
names of Brittany and Normandy to small spots of ground 
where they had planted corn, strawberries, and pease. Domingo 
and Mary, wishing after the example of their mistresses, to call 
to remembrance the places of their birth in Africa, denominated 
two pieces of ground where that grass grew of which they made 
: askets, and where they had planted a great gourd, Angola and 
Foullepointe. Thus, by those productions of their own cli- 
. mates, these exiled families cherished fond ideas of their native 
country, and soothed their sorrows in a foreign land. Alas ! I 
have seen the trees, the fountains, the rocks, of this spot, now so 
changed, animated by a thousand charming appellations; but in 


- tate, like a Grecian plain, they only present to view 
11 ins and heart-affecting inscriptions. 

Of the whole enclosure however no spot was more agreeable 
than that which went by the name of Virginia's Rest. At the 
foot of the rock named The Discovery of Friendship is a 
hollow place whence issues a fountain, which forms from it's 
source a little lake, in the middle of a meadow of fine grass. 
When Margaret had brought Paul into the World, I made her 
a present of an Indian cocoa-nut which had been given me. She 
planted this fruit on the borders of the lake, intending that the 
tree which it should produce might serve one day as an epocha 
of her son's birth. Madame de la Tour, after her example, plant- 
ed another there likewise, with a similar intention, as soon as she 
was delivered of Virginia. From these nuts grew two cocoa-trees 
which formed the whole archives of the two families ; one was 
called the tree of Paul, the other that of Virginia. They both grew 
in the same proportion as their young master and mistress, of a 
height rather unequal, but which surpassed at the end of twelve 
years that of the cottages. Already they interwove their branches, 
and dropped their young clusters of cocoas over the bason of the 

This plantation excepted, they had left the cavity of the rock 
just as nature had adorned it. On it's brown and humid 
radiated, in green and dusky stars, large plants of maiden hair ; 
and tufts of the scolopendra, suspended like long ribands of 
greenish purple, waved at the pleasure of the winds. Near to 
that grew long stripes of the periwinkle, the flowers of which 
nearly resemble those of the white gilly-flower, and pimentos, 
whose blood-coloured husks are brighter than coral. Round 
about these the plants of balm, with their leaves resembling a 
heart, and basilicons, with a carnation smell, exhaled the sweet- 
est of perfumes. From the summit of the rugged precipices of 
die mountain hung the /nmcy, like floating drapery, which form- 
ed on the sides of the rocks large festoons of verdure. The 
sea-birds, attracted by these peaceful retreats, flocked thither to 
pass the night. At sun-set you might see the rook and the sea- 
fly along the shores of the Sea ; and high in air the black 
friga-. white bird of the tropics, which abandon, together 

ivith the orb of day, the solitudes of the Indian Ocean. 


Virginia delighted to repose herself on the borders of this 
fountain, decorated with a pomp at once magnificent and wild. 
Thither did she often resort to wash the linen of the family, un- 
der the shade of the cocoa-trees : and sometimes she led her 
goats to pasture there. While she prepared cheeses of their 
milk, she took delight to see them browse on the maiden-hair 
which grew on the steep sides of the rock, and suspend them- 
selves in the air on one of it's cornices as on a pedestal. 

Paul, perceiving this to he the. fnvnurite retreat of Virginia, 
brought thither from the neighbouring forest the nests of all 
kinds of birds. The parents of these birds followed their young 
Ones, and established themselves in this new colony. Virginia 
scattered among them from time to time grains of rice, of maize 
and of millet. As soon as she appeared, the whistling black birds, 
the bengali whose warbling is so sweet, and the cardinal with 
his flame coloured plumage, left the bushes ; the paroquets, as 
green as the emerald, descended from the neighbouring lata- 
niers ; the partridges ran nimbly along the grass : all hastened in 
variegated groups to her very feet, like little chickens, while 
Paid and she amused themselves with transport, at their play- 
fulness, their appetites, and their loves. 

Amiable children, thus did you pass your early days, in per- 
fect innocence, and employing yourselves in acts of virtue ! How 
many times, in that spot, did your mothers, folding you in their 
arms, give thanks to Heaven for the consolation which you were 
preparing for their old age, and at seeing you enter into life un- 
der auspicies so happy ! How many times under the shadow 
of these rocks, have I partaken with them your rural repast, by 
which no animal was deprived of life ! Gourds filled with milk, 
fresh eggs, cakes of rice served up on the leaves of the banana- 
tree, baskets filled with potatoes, mangoes, oranges, pomegran- 
ates, bananas, attes, and pine-apples, presented at once the most 
nourishing aliment, the gayest colours and the most agreeable- 

Their conversation was as sweet and as innocent as the repast. 
Paul frequently talked of the labours of the day past, and of those 
of to-morrow ; he was always meditating something which would 
'servient to the general good : here the paths were not com- 
modious ; there they were indifferently seated j these young bow- 


«rs did not give a sufficient shade ; Virginia,wo\i\d be more com- 
fortable in another place. 

In the rainy season, in the day-time, they assembled all toge- 
ther in one of the cottages, masters and servants, and employed 
themselves in weaving mats of the herbage, and baskets of bam- 
boo. You saw displayed, in the most perfect order, along the 
boards of the wall, rakes, hatchets, spades ; and close by these 
instruments of agriculture, the productions which were the fruit 
of them, bags of rice, sheaves of corn, and rows of Bananas. 
Delicacy was there ever blended with abundance. Virginia as- 
sisted by the instructions of Margaret and her mother, amused 
herself with preparing sherbets and cordials, with the juice of 
the sugar-cane, of citrons, and of cedrats. 

When night arrived, they supped by the glimmering light of 
a lamp ; after which Madame de la Tour, or Margaret, related 
the histories of travellers who had lost their way by night, in the 
forests of Europe infested by robbers ; or of the shipwreck of 
some vessel driven by the tempest on the rocks of a desert isl- 
and. On hearing melancholy details of this kind the hearts of 
these sensible young folks caught lire. They implored oi Hea- 
ven the grace to put in practice, one day, the duties of hospita- 
lity to unhappy persons in such circumstances. Afterwards the 
two families separated to enjoy the gift of sleep, but in the ardor 
of impatience to meet again next morning. Sometimes they were 
lulled to rest by the noise of the rain rushing down in torrents 
on the roof of their cottages ; or by the roaring of the winds, 
conveying to their ears the distant murmuring of the billows . 
which broke upon the shore. They united in giving thanks to 
GOD for their personal security, the sentiment of which was 
heightened by that of danger remote. 

Madame de la Tour from time to time read aloud to the com- 
pany some interesting portion of the History of the Old or New 
Testament. They reasoned sparingly on the subject of those Sa 
cred Books ; for their theology consisted wholly in sentiment, like 
that of Nature ; and their morality, wholly in active benevolence, 
like that of the Gospel. They had no days destined some to mirth 
others to melancholy. Every day was to them a season of fes- 
tivity, and every thing that surrounded them a divine Temple, 
in which they incessandy admired an Intelligence infinite, om- 
nipotent, and graciously disposed toward Man. This sentiment 


of confidence in the Power Supreme filled them with consolation 
respecting the past, with fortitude for the present, and with hope 
for the time to come. Thus it was that those females, constrain- 
ed by calamity to fall back into Nature, had unfolded in them- 
selves, and in their children, those feelings which are the gift of 
Nature, to prevent our sinking under the pressure of calamity. 

But as there sometimes arise in the best regulated spirits clouds 
to disturb it's serenity, when any member of this society had the 
appearance of pensiveness, all the rest felt attracted toward that 
one, and dissipated the bitterness of thought rather by feelings 
than by reflections. Each exerted, to this effect, their particu- 
lar character: Margaret, a lively gaiety; Madame cie la Toiu\ 
a mild theology ; Virginia, tender caresses ; Paul frankness and 
cordiality. Nay Mary and Domingo contributed their share of 
consolation. When they beheld affliction they were afflicted ; 
when they saw tears shed they wept. Thus the feeble plants in- 
terlace their boughs, in order to resist the violence of the hur- 

When the weather was fine they went every Sunday to mass 
to the church of Pamplemousses, the tower of which you see 
below in the plain. The wealthy planters resorted thither in 
their palanquins ; and made many efforts to form an acquain- 
tance with these happily united families, and invited them to 
partake of their parties of pleasure. But they uniformly declin- 
ed accepting such tenders, civilly and respectfully, under the 
conviction that persons of consequence court the obscure, only 
re of having compliant hangers-on, and that it is 
impossible to be complaisant but by flattering the passions of 
another, v. be good or bad. On the other hand they 

shunned, with no less circumspection, all intimacy with the lower 
settlers, who are for the most part jealous, back-biters, and vul- 
gar. They passed, at first, with one of those sets, for timid ; 
and with the other for haughty ; but their reserved behaviour 
accompanied with marks of politeness so obliging, espe- 
to persons in distress, that they imperceptibly acquired 
pect of the rich, and the confidence of the poor. 
. a mass was over, they were frequently sought unto, for 
iterposition of some gracious office or another. It was a 


or a child importuning them to visit a sick mother in one of the 
adjoining hamlets. They always carried about them some re- 
ceipts adapted to the diseases incident to the inhabitants, and 
they administered their prescriptions with that good grace which 
communicates such a value to small services. They succeeded 
particularly in curing the maladies of the mind, so oppressive in 
a state of solitude, and in an infirm state of body. Madame dc 
la Tour spoke with so much confidence of the Deity, that the 
sick person, listening to her discourse, felt the impression of 
his presence. From these visits Virginia frequently returned 
with her eyes bathed in tears, but her heart overflowing with 
joy ; for she had been blessed with an opportunity of doing good. 
She it was who prepared, beforehand, the medicines necessary 
to the sick, and who presented them with a grace ineffable. 

After those visits of humanity, they sometimes extended their 
walk by the valley of the long mountain, as far as my habitation, 
where I expected them to dinner, on the banks of the little river 
which flows in my neighbourhood. I provided myself for such 
occasions with some bottles of old wine, in order to enliven the 
gaiety of our Indian repasts by those pleasant and cordial pro- 
ductions of Europe. At other times we had our rendezvous 
on the shore of the Sea, at the mouth of some other small rivers, 
which in this part of the World can hardly be called any thing 
more than a larger kind of brook. Thither we carried from the 
plantation various kinds of vegetable provision which we added 
to the abundant supplies furnished by the Ocean. We fished 
along the shore for cabots, polypuses, lobsters, roaches, shrimps, 
crabs, urchins, oysters, and shell-fish of every kind. Situations 
the most terrible frequently procured us pleasures the most tran- 
quillizing. Sometimes seated on a rock under the shade of a 
velvet-tree, we contemplated the billows from the main rolling 
on, and breaking under our feet with a tremendous roar. Paul, 
who, besides his other qualities could swim like a fish, now and 
then advanced upon the shallows to meet the surge, then, as it 
approached, fled toward the shore, pursued by it's vast, foaming 
and raging swell, a considerable way up the strand. But Vir- 
ginia, as often as she saw this, screamed aloud, and declared that 
such kind of amusement terrified her exceedingly. 

Vol.. III. E 


Our meals were followed up by the singing and dancing of 
these too young people. Virginia chanted the felicity of a ru- 
ral life, and the wretchedness of sea-faring men, whom avarice 
prompts to encounter a furious element, rather than to cultivate 
the earth, which confers so many benefits in peace and tranquil- 
lity. Sometimes, after the manner of the negroes, Paul and 
she performed a pantomine. Pantomine is the first language of 
IVIan ; it is practised among all Nations. It is so natural and so 
expressive, that the children of the whites quickly 4earn it, from 
seeing those of the blacks thus amuse themselves. Virginia, 
recollecting the histories which her mother used to read, those 
especially which had affected her the most, exhibited the prin- 
cipal events of them with much natural expression: Sometimes, 
to the sound of Domingo^ t> tam-tam, she made her appearance 
on the downy stage, hearing a pitcher on her head. She advan- 
ced with timidity, to fill it with water at the source of a neigh- 
bouring fountain. Domingo and Mary, representing the shep- 
herds of Midian, obstructing her passage, and feigned to repel 
her. Paul flew to her assistance, beat off the shepherds, filled 
the pitcher of Virginia, and placing it upon her head, at the 
same time bound around it a garland of the scarlet flowers of 
r: winkle, which heightened the fairness of her complexion. 
Then, taking a part in their innocent sports, 1 assumed the cha- 
i of Raguel and bestowed Paul my daughter Zipporah in 

At another time, she represented the unfortunate Ruth, who 
returns to her lamented husband's country a widow, and in po- 
verty, where she finds herself treated as a stranger, after a long 
absence. Domingo and Mary acted the part of the reapers. 
Virginia appeared, gleaning up and down after them, and pick- 
ing up the ears of corn. Paul, imitating the gravity of a Patri- 
arch, interrogated her ; she, trembling, replied to his questions. 
jNioved with compassion, he immediately granted an asylum to 
innocence, and the rights of hospitality to misfortune. He fil- 
led Virginia's apron with provisions of every kind, and brought 
her before us, as before the elders of the citv, declaring that he 
took her to wife, notwithstanding her extreme indigence. At 
this scene, Madame de la Tar, calling to rememhrance the 
state of desertion in which she had been left bv her own rela* 


tions, her widowhood, the kind reception which Margaret had 
given her, now succeeded by the hope of a happy union between 
their children, could not refrain from tears ; and this blended 
recollection of good and evil, drew from the eyes of us all the 
tears of sorrow and of joy. 

These dramas were exhibited with such a truth of expres- 
sion, that we actually imagined ourselves transported to the 
plains of Syria or of Palestine. There was no want of decora- 
tions, of illuminations, and of orchestras, suitable to this spec- 
tacle. The place of the scene usually was at the cross-paths of 
a forest, the openings of which formed around us several ar- 
cades of foliage. YV were at their centre sheltered from the 
heat, all the day long : but when the Sun had descended to the: 
horizon, his rays, broken by the trunks of the trees, diverged 
into the shades of the forest in long luminous emanations, which 
produced the most majestic effect. Sometimes his complete 
disk appeared at the extremity of an avenue, and rendered it 
quite dazzling with a tide of light. The foliage of the trees, 
illumined on the under side with his saffron-coloured rays, 
sparkled with the fires of the topaz and of the emerald. Their 
mossy and brown trunks seemed to be transformed into columns 
of antique bronze, and the birds, already retired in silence un- 
der the dark foliage for the night, surprized by the sight of a 
new Aurora, saluted all at once the luminary of day, by a thou- 
sand and a thousand songs. 

The night very often surprized us regaling ourselves v 
these rural festivities ; but the purity of the air, and the mild- 
ness of the climate, permitted us to sleep under an ajoupa in 
the midst of the woods, free from all fear of thieves either at 
hand or at a distance. Every one returned next morning to 
his own cottage, and found it in the same state in which it hac] 
been left. There reigned at that time so much honesty and 
simplicity in this un-commercial island, that the doors of many 
houses did not fasten by a key, and a lock was an object of cu- 
riosity to many Creoles. 

But there were certain days of the year celebrated by Paul 

and Virginia as seasons of peculiar rejoicing ; these were the 

birth-days of their mothers. Virginia never failed, the ev ning 

e, to bake and dross rakes of the flour of wheat, which she 


sent to the poor families of whites born in the island, who had 
never tasted the bread of Europe, and who, without any assis- 
tance from the blacks, reduced to live on maize in the midst of 
the woods, possessed, toward the support of poverty, neither 
the stupidity which is the concomitant of slavery, nor the cou- 
rage which education inspires. 

These cakes were the only presents which Virginia had it in 
her power to make, from the affluence of the plantation ; but 
they were bestowed with a grace which greatly inhanced their 
value. First, Paul himself was desired to undertake the charge 
of presenting them to those families, and they were invited on 
receiving them, to come on the morrow and pass the day at the 
habitation of Madame de la Tour and Margaret. There arrived, 
accordingly, a mother with two or three miserable daughters, 
vellow, meagre, and so timid that they durst not lift up their 
eyes. Virginia presently set them all at their ease : she served 
them with a variety of refreshments, the goodness of which she 
heightened by some particular circumstances which, according 
to her, increased it's relish. That liquor had been prepared by 
Margaret ; this by her mother ; her brother himself had gather- 
ed that fruit on the summit of the tree. She prevailed on Paul 
to lead them out to dance. She never gave over till she saw 
them content and happy. It was her wish that they should be- 
come joyful in the joy of the family. u No one," said she, 
" can find happiness for himself but in promoting the happiness 
***' of another." On taking their leave to return home, she pres- 
sed them to carry away any thing which seemed to have given 
them peculiar satisfaction, veiling the necessity of accepting her 
presents, under the pretext of their novelty, or of their singu- 
larity. If she remarked their clothes to be excessively tattered, 
she, with the consent of her mother, selected some of her own 
and charged Paul to go by stealth and deposit them at the door 
of their cottages. Thus she did good, after the manner of the 
Deity ; concealing the benefactress and shewing the benefit. 

You gentlemen of Europe, whose minds are tainted from 

your early infancy by so many prejudices incompatible with 

happiness, you are unable to conceive how Nature can bestow 

so much illumination, and so many pleasures. Your souls, cir- 

vm^ribed within a small sphere of human knowledge, ooon 


attain the term of their artificial enjoyments ; but nature and the 
heart are inexhaustible. Paul and Virginia had no time-pieces, 
nor almanacks, nor books of chronology, of history or of philo- 
sophy : the periods of their lives were regulated by those of Na- 
ture. They knew the hour of the day by the shadow of the 
trees ; the seasons, by the times when they produce their flowers, 
or their fruits ; and years, by the number of their harvests. 
These delightful images diffused the greatest charms over their 
conversation. " It is dinner-time," said Virginia to the family, 
" the shadows of the bananas are at their feet ;" or else, " night 
" approaches, for the tamarinds are closing their leaves.'' 
" When shall we see you ?" said some of her companions of the 
vicinity to her; " at the time of the sugar-canes," replied Vir- 
" ginia, your visit will be still sweeter and more agreeable at 
" that time," returned these young people. When enquiries 
were made respecting her own age and that of Paul, " My bro- 
" ther," said she, " is of the same age with the great cocoa-tree 
" of the fountain, and I, with that of the small one. The man- 
" go-trees have yielded their fruit twelve times, and the orange 
" trees have opened their blossoms twenty four times, since I 
" came into the World." Like Fauns and Dryads their lives 
seemed to be attached to those of the trees. They knew no 
other historical epochs but the lives of their mothers ; no other 
chronology but that of their orchards ; and no other philosophy 
but universal benificence, and resignation to the will of GOD. 
After all, what occasion had these young creatures for such 
riches and knowledge as we have learnt to prize? Their igno 
ranee and their wants were even a farther addition to their hap 
piness. Not a day passed in which they did not communicat 
to each other some assistance, or some information ; I repeat it. 
information ; and though it might be mingled with some error. 
pet man in a state of purity has no dangerous error to fear. 
Thus did these two children of Nature advance in life : hitherto 
no care had wrinkled their foreheads, no intemperance had cor 
rupted their blood, no unhappy passion had depraved their hearts : 
love, innocence, piety, were daily unfolding the beauties of their 
soul in graces ineffable, in their features, in their attitudes, and in 
thcir'inotions. In the morning of life they had all the freshnc?^ 
parents in the garden of Eden, when, pre 


ing from the hands of their Creator, they saw, approached, and 
conversed with each other, at first, like brother and sister. Vir- 
ginia gentle, modest and confident like Eve ; Paul like Adam, 
with the stature of a man, and all the simplicity of a child. 

He has a thousand times told me, that sometimes being alone 
with her, on his return from labour, he had thus addressed her : 
" When I am weary the sight of thee revives me ; when from 
" the mountain's height I descry thee at the bottom of this val- 
" ley, thou appearest like a rose-bud in the midst of our orchards; 
'' when thou waikest toward the dwelling of our mothers, the 
" partridge which trips along to it's young one's, has a chest less 
" beautiful, and a gait less nimble than thou hast. Although I 
*' lose sight of thee through the trees, there is no occasion for 
" thy presence in order to find thee again ; something of thee, 
" which I am unable to express, remains for me in the air through 
" which thou hast passed, and on the grass upon which thou hast 
" been seated. When I approach thee all my senses are ra- 
" vished ; the azure of the Heavens is less radiant than the blue 
" of thine eyes ; the warbling of the bengali is less sweet than 
" the tone of thy voice ; if I touch thee only with the tip of my 
" finger, my whole body thrills with pleasure. Dost thou re- 
" member that day on which we passed across the pebbly bed 
" of the river of the mountain of the Three Paps ; when I arri- 
" ved on it's banks I was very much fatigued, but as soon as I 
" had taken thee on my back, it seemed as if I had gotten wings 
" like a bird : Tell me, by what charm thou hast been able thus 
" to enchant me : Is it by thy understanding ? Our mothers have 
" more than either of us : Is it by thy caresses ? Our mothers 
" embrace me still oftener than thou dost : I believe it is by thy 
" benevolence ; I shall never forget that thou walkedst bare-foot 
u as far as the Black River, to solicit the pardon of a wretched 
" fugitive slave. Receive, my much loved Virginia, receive 
" this flowery branch of the lemon-tree, which I have gathered 
" for thee in the forest : place it at night by thy pillow : eat this 
" morsel of honey-comb, which I took for thee from the top of a 
" rock. First however repose thyself upon my bosom, and I 
" shall be again revived." 

Virginia replied, " Oh, my brother ! the rays of the rising 
'•' Sun on '. jts of these rocks afford me lcs^ delight 


u thy presence : I love my own mother dearly ; I love thine ; 
" but when they call thee, Son, I love them still more. The 
u caresses which they bestow on thee are felt more sensibly by 
" me than those which I myself receive from them. Thou ask- 
" est me, Why thou lovest me ? But those that are reared to- 
" gether always love each other : behold our birds, brought up 
" in the same nest, they love like us, like us they are always to- 
" gether : hearken how they call and reply to each other from 
" bush to bush : in like manner, when the echoes bring to mv 
" ear the airs which thou playest on thy flute from the moun- 
" tain-top, I repeat the words of them at the bottom of this val- 
" lev : thou art most dear to me, but above all, since that day on 
" which thou wert determined to fight the master of the slave 
" for my sake : since that period I have said to myself a thou- 
" sand times : Ah ! my brother has an excellent heart : but for 
" him I should have died with terror. I daily implore the bles- 
" sing of the Almighty on my own mother, and on thine, on 
" thyself, and on our poor domestics : but when I pronounce 
" thv name my devotion seems to glow, I so earnestly intreat 
" the Almighty that no evil may befal thee. Why dost thou 
" go so far off, and climb to such heights, to find me fruits and 
" flowers ? Have we not enough in the garden ? How fatigued, 
" and in what a heat thou art just now r" Then with her little 
white handkerchief she wiped his forehead and his checks, 
and gave him a thousand kisses. 

Nevertheless for some time past Firginiahad felt herself i 
turbed with an unknown maladv. Her fine blue eyes were 
tinged with black, her colour faded, and an universal languor 
weakened her bodv. Serenity no longer sat upon her forehead. 
nor smiles upon her lips : all at once might be seen in her, gaiety 
without joy, and sadness without sorrow. She withdrew hcr- 

!rom her innocent amusements, from her sweet occupations, 
and from the society of her much-loved family. She wandered 
here and there in the most solitary places of the plantation,seek- 
ing rest and finding none. Sometimes, at the sight of Paul, 

ran up to him "in a playful manner; when all of a sudden, 
:s on die point of coming in contact with him, an unac- 
countable embarrassment seized her ; a lively red coloured her 

cheeks, and her eyes no longer dared to fix themselves or 


his. Paul thus addressed her : " These rocks are covered with 
" verdure, the birds warble when they see thee : all is gay 
" around thee, and thou alone art sad." Thus, with embraces, 
did he endeavour to re-animate her ; but she, turning away her 
head, flew trembling to her mother. The unhappy girl felt 
herself discomposed by the caresses of her brother. Paul was 
quite ignorant of the cause of caprices so new and so strange. 

Misfortunes seldom come singly. One of those Summers 
which desolate from time to time the lands situated between 
the Tropics, happened to extend it's ravages here also. It was 
toward the end of December, when the Sun, in Capricorn, 
scorches with his vertical fires the whole Isle of France, for 
three weeks together : the south-east wind, which reigns there 
almost all the year round, now blew no longer. Huge whirl- 
winds of dust raised themselves from the high-ways, and hung 
suspended in the air. The earth was cleft asunder in all parts, 
and the grass entirely burnt up ; ardent exhalations issued from 
the sides of the mountains, and most of the rivulets were dried 
up. No cloud arose out of the sea ; during the day-time, only 
red vapours ascended above it's surface, and appeared at sun-set 
like the flames of a great conflagration. Even the night season 
diffused no coolness over the burning atmosphere. The bloody 
disk of the moon rose, of an enormous size, in the hazy horizon ; 
the languid flocks, on the sides of the mountains, with their 
necks stretched out toward Heaven, and drawing in the air with 
difficulty, made the valleys resound with their mournful cries : 
even the cafre who conducted them lay along the ground, en- 
deavouring to cool himself in that position. Every where the 
soil was scorching hot, and the stifling air resounded with the 
buzzing of insects, which sought to quench their thirst with 
ihe blood of men and of animals. 

One of those parching nights Virginia felt all the symptoms 
of her malady redouble. She got up, she sat down, she return- 
ed to bed, but in no attitude could she find either sleep or re- 
pose. She rambled by the light of the moon toward the foun- 
tain ; she perceived it's source, which, in defiance of the drought, 
still flowed in silver fillets over the dusky sides of the rock. 
Without hesitation she plunged herself into it's bason ; at first 
the freshness re-animated her ; and a thousand agreeable re- 


collections presented themselves to her mind. She remember- 
ed how, in the days of infancy, her mother and Margaret amus- 
ed themselves with bathing Paul and her in that very stream, 
and how Paul afterwards, appropriating this bath solely to her 
use, had deepened it's bed, covered the bottom with sand, and 
sowed aromatic herbs around it's brink. On her naked arms., 
and on her bosom, she perceived the reflexes of the two palm- 
trees, which had been planted at the birth of her brother and 
at her own, and which now interwove their green boughs, 
and their young cocoas, over her head. She called to remem- 
brance the friendship of Paul, sweeter than perfumes, purer than 
the water of the fountain, stronger than united palm-trees, and 
she heaved a sigh. She then reflected that it was the night sea- 
son, and that she was in solitude ; a consuming fire enflamed 
her breast. Immediately she hastened in dismay, from these 
dangerous shades, and from waters more ardent than the suns 
of the Torrid Zone : she hurried to her mother to seek refuge 
from herself. A thousand times, wishing to disclose her an- 
guish, she pressed the maternal hands between her own : a thou- 
sand times she was on the point of pronouncing the name of 
Paul, but her heart was so full as to deprive her tongue of ut- 
terance, and reclining her head on the bosom of her mother, 
she bedewed it with a shower of tears. 

Madame de la Tour plainly perceived the cause of her daugh- 
ter's disorder, but even she herself had not the courage to speak 
to her about it. " My child," said she to her, " address your- 
" self to the Almighty, who dispenses health and life according 
" to his good pleasure. He makes trial of your virtue to-day, 
" only in order to recompense you to-morrow; consider that 
" the chief end of our being placed on the Earth is to practise 
; ' virtue." 

In the mean time, those excessive heats raised out of the bo- 
om of the Ocean an assemblage of vapours, which like, a vast 
parasol, covered the face of the island. The summits of the 
mountains collected these around them, and long furrows of 
flame from time to time issued out of their cloud-capt peaks. 
Presently after tremendous thunder-claps made the woods, the 
plains, and the valleys, reverberate the noise of their explosions. 
The rain in cataracts gushed down from the Heavens. Foam- 

Vol. in. f 


ing torrents precipitated themselves down the sides of this 
mountain ; the bottom of the bason was transformed into a Sea ; 
the platform on which the cottages were raised into a little isl- 
and ; and the entrance into the valley had become a sluice, out 
of which rusln d, with awful impetuosity, by the force of the 
roaring waters, the earth, the trees, and the rocks. 

The whole family, seized with trembling, addressed their 
prayer to GOD in Madame de la Tour's cottage, the roof of 
which cracked dreadfully by the fury of the tempest. Though 
the door and the outside window-shutters were closely barred, 
ever)' object was clearly distinguishable within through the join- 
ing of the boards, so bright and so frequent were the flashes of 
lightening. The intrepid Paul, attended by Domingo, went from 
the one cottage to the other, notwithstanding the raging of the 
elements, here securing a wall by a cross beam, and there by 
driving in a stake ; he went in only now and then, to comfort the 
family with the hope of the speedy return of fine weather. In 
reality, towards evening the rain ceased ; the Trade-wind from 
the South-east resumed it's usual current; the stormy clouds 
were driven to the North-west, and the setting Sun appeared in 
the horizon. 

The first wish which Virginia expressed was to revisit the 
place of her repose : Paul approached her with a timid air, and 
offered her his arm to assist her in walking thither. She ac- 
cepted it with a smile, and they set out together from the cot- 
tage: the air was cool and sonorous: clouds of white smoke 
arose on the ridges of the mountains, furrowed here and there 
by the foam of the torrents, which were now drying up on eve- 
ry side. As for the garden, it was entirely destroyed by deep 
gutters ; most of the fruit trees were torn up by the roots ; 
immense heaps of sand covered the stripes of meadow-ground, 
and completely choked up Virginia's bath : the two cocoa-trees 
however were still standing, and in full verdure : the bowers and 
the grassy turfs were no more, and the ear was no longer charm- 
ed with the warbling of the birds, except a few bengalis on the 
summit of the neighbouring rocks, which deplored with plain- 
tive notes the loss of their young. 

At sight of this desolation Virginia said to Paul, " You 
•' brought the birds hither, and the hurricane has destroyed 


" them ; you planted this garden, and it is now no more : every 
" thing on earth perishes ; Heaven alone is unchangeable. 1 ' 
Paul replied : " Oh ! then, that it were in my power to bestow 
" some gift of Heaven upon you ! but alas I I possess nothing 
" now, even on the Earth." Virginia with a blush, returned : 
" You have certainly the portrait of St. Paul, that you can call 
" your own." Scarcely had she pronounced these words, than 
Paul flew to his mother's cottage to seek for it. This portrait 
was a small miniature representing Paul the hermit. Margaret 
regarded it with singular devotion : while a girl she wore it long 
round her own neck ; but when she become a mother she sus- 
pended it round the neck of her child. It happened that when 
pregnant of him, and abandoned by all the World, from merely 
contemplating the image of this blessed Recluse, the fruit of her 
womb contracted a strong resemblance to it; this determined 
her to bestow the same name on him ; and likewise to give him 
for a patron, a Saint who had passed his life far from Man, by 
whom he had been first abused and then deserted. Virginia 
on receiving this small portrait from the hands of Paul, said, 
with much emotion : " My brother, while I live this shall ne- 
" ver be taken from me, and I shall always remember that you 
" gave me the only possession you had in the World." On hear- 
ing those tones of cordiality, on this unexpected return of fami- 
liarity and tenderness, Paul was going to clasp her in his arms ; 
but as nimbly as a bird she sprung away, leaving him quite con- 
founded, and totally unable to account for a conduct so extra- 

Meanwhile. Margaret said to Madame de la Tour: " Why 
" should we not marry our children ? Their passion for each 
" other is extreme ; my son, indeed, is not yet sensible of it : 
" but when Nature shall have begun to speak to him, to no pur- 
" pose will we employ all our vigilance over them ; every thing 
" is to be feared." Madame de la Tour, returned : " They are 
" too young, and too poor ; what anxiety would it cost us should 
" Virginia bring into the World unhappy children, whom 
" haps she would not have strength to rear. Domingo is very 
" much broken; Mary is infirm; I myself, my dear friend lor 
" these last fourteen years feel my health very much impaired. 
person soon grows old in these hot countries, especially 


" when that period is so greatly accelerated by sorrow. Paul is 
" our only hope ; let us wait till age has strengthened his con- 
* stitution, and till he is able to support us by the labour of his 
" hands. At present you well know we have hardly any thing 
" more than a scanty supply from day to day* But if we send 
" Paul to India for a short space of time, commerce will supply 
" him with the means of purchasing some slaves. On his return 
" hither we will marry him to Virginia ; for I am well assured 
" that no one can make my beloved daughter so happy as your 
" son Paul. Let us mention the matter to our neighbour." 

These ladies accordingly cousulted me, and I approved ol 
their plan. " The seas of India are delightful," said I to them ; 
" if we chuse a favourable season for going from hence to that 
" country, the voyage outward is but six weeks at most, and as 
" long to return ; we will make up a small assortment of goods 
li for Paul; for I have some neighbours who are very fond of 
" him ; were wc but to provide him with a parcel of raw cotton, 
" of which we can here make no use for want of mills to dress 
" it ; some ebony wood which is so common here that we use 
" it for fuel ; and several sorts of rosin, which go to waste in 
" these woods ; all of those commodities will find a market in 
" India, though they are of no value at all here." 

I took upon myself the charge of M. de la Bourdonaye's per- 
mission for this embarkation ; but I thought it necessary, be- 
forehand, to open the business to Paul. How was I astonished 
however when that young man said to me, with a good sense 
far above his years : " Why would you have me quit my family 
" for a visionary project of fortune ? Can there be a more ad- 
" vantageous commerce in the World than the cultivation of a 
." field, which sometimes yields fifty and a hundred fold ? If we 
" wish to engage in trade, can we not do so by carrying our su- 
kk perfluities from hence to the city, without the necessity of my 
" rambling to the Indies ? Our parents tell me that Domingo is 
" old and worn out ; but I am young, and daily acquiring fresh 
" vigour. What if any accident should befal them during my 
" absence, more especially to Virginia who even now suffers 
K very severely ? Ah ! no ! no ! I can never bring myself to the 
" resolution of quitting them." 


His answer greatly embarrassed me ; for Madame de la Tour 
had not concealed from me Virginia's condition, and the desire 
which she herself had of deferring their union till they were of 
a more mature age, by separating them from each other. I 
durst not as much as hint to Paul that such were her motives. 

Whilst these transactions were going on, a vessel newly ar- 
rived from France brought a letter to Madame de la Tour from 
her aunt. The fear of death, without which obdurate hearts 
would never soften, had appalled her. She had just recovered 
from a dangerous disorder, which produced a deep melancholy, 
and which age rendered incurable. She requested her niece to 
return to France : or if the state of her health were such as to 
prevent her taking so long a voyage, she enjoined her to send 
Virginia thither, on whom she intended to bestow a good edu- 
cation, a place at Court, and a bequest of all her possessions : the 
return of her favour, she added, depended entirely on compli- 
ance with these injunctions. 

No sooner had this letter been read than it spread universal 
consternation in the family ; Domingo and Mary began to weep ; 
Paul, motionless with astonishment, seemed ready to burst with 
rage ; Virginia, her eyes stedfastly fixed on her mother, dared 
not to utter a syllable. " Can you bring youi-self to the reso- 
" lution of quitting us ?" said Margaret to Madame de la Tour. 
" No, my friend, no, my children," replied Madame de la Tour . 
" I will never leave you ; with you I have lived, and with you 
" I mean to die : I never knew what happiness was till I expe- 
" rienced your friendship : if my health is impaired, ancient 
" sorrows are the cause : my heart has been pierced bv the 
" harshness of my relations, and by the loss of my beloved hus- 
" band : but since that period I have enjoyed more consolatioi: 
" and felicity with you, in these poor cottages, than ever the 
" riches of my family gave ine reason to expect, even in my na- 
" tive country." At these words tears of joy bedewed the 
cheeka of the whole household : Paul, folding Madame de la 
Tour in his arms, exclaimed : " And I will never, never quit 
" you, nor go from hence to the Indies ; you shall experience 
" no want, my dear mother, as long as we are able to work for 
u you." Of all the society, however, the person who testified the 
least joy, and who nevertheless felt it the most, was 


A gentle cheerfulness appeared in her the remainder of the 
day, and the return of her tranquillity redoubled the general 

Next morning at sun-rise, as they were offering up their ac- 
customed matin prayer which preceded breakfast, Domingo in- 
formed them that a gentleman on horseback was approaching 
the plantation, followed by two slaves. It was M. de la Bour- 
donaye. He entered the cottage where the whole family were 
at table : Virginia was serving up, according to the custom of 
the country, coffee and boiled rice ; there were likewise hot 
potatoes and fresh bananas : the only dishes which they had 
were the halves of a gourd ; and all their table-linen consisted 
of the leaves of the plantain. The Governor at first expressed 
some surprize at the meanness of their dwelling ; then, addres- 
sing himself to Madame de la Tour, he said that his public situ- 
ation sometimes prevented him from paying attention to indi- 
viduals, but that she however had a title to claim his more im- 
mediate regard. " You have, madam," added he, '* an aunt 
" at Paris, a lady of quality and very rich, who designs to be- 
" stow her fortune upon you, but at the same time expects that 
" you will attend her." Madame de la lour replied, that her 
unsettled state of health would not permit her to undertake so 
long a voyage. " Surely then," cried M. de la Bourdonaye, 
ki you cannot without injustice, deprive your young and beauti- 
" ful daughter of so great an inheritance : I will not conceal 
" from you, that your aunt has employed authority, to secure 
" your daughter's compliance with her wish. The minister has 
w written to me on the subject, authorizing me, if necessary, to 
" exercise the hand of power ; but my only aim in employing 
" that, is to promote the happiness of the inhabitants of this 
w colony ; I expect therefore that you will, with cheerfulness, 
" submit to the sacrifice of a few years, on which depend the 
" establishment of your daughter, and your own welfare for the 
'•' remainder of life. For what purpose do people resort to 
" these islands ? Is it not in the view of making a fortune ? 
k ' Surely however it is far more agreeable to return, and obtain 
" one in our native country." 

As he said these words, he placed upon the table a large bag 
M" piastres, which one of Us slaves had brought. " This," aci- 


ded he " is what your aunt has remitted, to make the necessary 
" preparations for the voyage of the young lady your daughter." 
He then concluded with gently reproaching Madame de la 
Tour for not having applied to him in her necessities : at the 
same time applauding the noble firmness which she had dis- 
played. Paul upon this broke silence, and thus addressed the 
Governor : u Sir, my mother did apply to you, and your recep- 
" tion was unkind to the last degree." " Have you then another 
" child ?" said M. de la Bourdonaye to Madame de la Tour : 
" No, Sir," replied she ; " this is the son of my friend ; but he 
" and Virginia are our common property, and equally beloved 
" bv both." " Young man," said the Governor, addressing 
himself to Paul, " when you shall have acquired experience 
" of the World, you will learn to what distresses people in place 
" are exposed; you will discover how easy it is to prejudice 
" them, and how often intriguing vice obtains from them what, 
" in justice, should be bestowed on concealed merit." 

M. de la Bourdonaye, on the invitation of Madame de la 
Tour, seated himself by her at the table. He breakfasted, as 
the Creoles do^ upon coffee mixed with boiled rice. He was 
charmed with the order and neatness of the little cottage, with 
the union of the two happy families, and even with the zeal of 
their old domestics. " Here," said he " is no furniture but 
" what the woods supply, but I see countenances serene, and 
" hearts of gold." Paul, delighted with the familiarity of the 
new Governor, said to him : " I desire your friendship, for 
" you are an honest man." M. de la Bourdonaye received this 
mark of insular cordiality with pleasure. He embraced Paul. 
and pressing him by the hand, assured him that he might rery 
upon his friendship. 

After breakfast he took Madame de la. Tour apart, and infor- 
med her that a favourable opportunity just now offered of send- 
ing her daughter into France, by means of a vessel on the point 
of sailing ; and that he would recommend her to the care of a 
lady, a relation of his own who was going passenger in it ; re- 
presenting at the same time that it would be very wrong to 
sacrifice the prospect of an immense fortune, to the pleasure of 
her daughter's company for a few \ ears. " Your aunt," added 
He, as he was departing, " cannot hold out more than two vearc 


" : longer ; her friends have assured me of it : consider the matter 
" therefore seriously, I pray you ; consult your own mind ; surely 
" every person of common sense must be of my opinion." Ma- 
dame de la Tour replied : " As I desire nothing henceforward 
" but the welfare of my daughter, the voyage to France shall 
" be left entirely to her own disposal." 

Madame de la Tour was not sorry at finding an opportunity 
of separating Paul and Virginia for a short time } but it was 
only in the view of securing their mutual happiness at a future 
period. She accordingly took her daughter aside, and said to 
her : " My dear child, our domestics are growing old ; Paul is 
" still very young ; age is stealing upon Margaret, and I myself 
" am already infirm : should I happen to die, what will become 
" of you in the midst of these deserts ? You will be left entirely 
" alone with no person to assist you, and you will be obliged to 
" procure yourself a livelihood by labouring incessantly in the 
" ground, like a hireling : such an idea overwhelms me with 
" grief." Virginia thus replied : " GOD has doomed us to 
" labour : you have taught me how to work, and to offer up daily 
" thanksgiving to Him. Hitherto He has not abandoned us, 
" nor will He abandon us now. His providence watches with 
" peculiar care over the unhappy ; you have told me so a thou- 
" sand times, my dear mother ! Oh, I shall never have resolution 
" to quit you." Madame de la Tour, much affected, returned, 
H I have no other intention than that of rendering you happy, 
" and of uniting you one day to Paul, who is not your brother : 
" Consider likewise that his fortune now depends entirely on 
" you." 

A young girl in love thinks that every one is ignorant of it. 
She spreads the same veil over her eyes which she wears on her 
heart ; but when it is removed by the hand of a beloved friend, 
immediately the secret torments of her love transpire, as through 
an opened barrier, and the gent e expansions of confidence suc- 
ceed to die mysterious reserve in which she had enveloped her- 
self. Virginia, sensibly alive to the new testimonies of her mo- 
ther's kindness, freely related the many struggles which she had 
experienced within herself, and of which GOD alone had been 
the witness ; that she perceived the hand of his providence in 
the consolation administered by a tender mother, who appr 


of her inclination, and who would direct hevbv wholesome coun- 
and that now, resting entirely on her support, every thing 
operated as an inducement to remain where she was, without 
uneasiness for the present, or anxiety for the future. 

Madame de la Tour, perceiving that her confidence had pro- 
duced an effect entirely different from what she had expected, 
said to her : " My dear child, I have no wish to constrain your 
" inclinations ; consider the matter at your leisure ; but conceal 
" your love from Paul : when the heart of a young woman is 
" gained, her lover has nothing more to ask of her." 

Toward the evening, while she was alone with Virginia, a tall 
man dressed in a blue cassock came in. He was an ecclesias- 
tical missionary of the island, and confessor to Madame de la 
Tour and Virginia, and had been sent thither by the Governor. 
" My children," said he, as he entered, " there is wealth in 
" store for you now, thank Heaven ! You have at length the 
" means of gratifying your benevolent feelings, by administering 
" assistance to the wretched. I well know what the Governor 
" has said to you, and also your reply. My good madam, the 
" state of your health obliges you to remain here ; but as for 
t( you, young lady, you have no excuse. We must obey the 
" will of Providence, in respecting our aged relations, however 
u unjust they may have been to us. It is a sacrifice, I grant, 
" but it is the command of the Almighty. He devoted him- 
" self, for us, and it is our duty to devote ourselves for the wel- 
" fare of our kindred. Your voyage into France will finally 
" come to a happy issue : Can you possibly, my dear child, have 
" any objection to go thither r" Virginia, with her eyes cast 
down, and trembling as she spake, replied : " If it is the com- 
" mand of GOD that I should go I have nothing to say against 
" it ; the will of GOD be done," said she, bursting into tears. 

The missionary took his departure, and gave the Governor 
an account of the success of his embassy. Madame de la Tour 
however sent a message to me bv Domingo, intreating me to 
come over, and consult about Virginia, departure. It was my 
firm opinion that she ought not to be permitted to go. I main- 
tain, as infalliable principles of happiness, that the advantages of 
Nature ought always to be preferred before those of fortune ; 
and that we should never seek from abroad those blessings which 

Vol. III. G 


we can find at home. I extend these maxims to all cases, with- 
out a single exception. But of what avail could my moderate 
counsels prove, against the illusions of an immense fortune, and 
my natural reason against the prejudices of the world, and 
against an authority held sacred by Madame de la Tour ? This 
lady consulted me only out of politeness, for she no longer de- 
liberated in her own mind after the decision of her confessor. 
Even Margaret who, in spite of the advantages which she 
thought her son might derive from Virginia fortune, had 
warmly opposed her departure, no longer made any objections. 
As for Paul, entirely ignorant of the resolutions which might 
be formed, and alarmed at the secret conversations of Madame 
de la Tour and her daughter, he abandoned himself to a gloomy 
sadness : " Surely," said he, " they are contriving some mis- 
u chief against me, from the mysteriousness of their conduct 
" tow ard me." 

A report meanwhile being soon circulated in the island, that 
fortune had visited these solitudes, merchants of every descrip- 
tion might be seen scrambling up hither: they displayed, amidst 
these poor cottages, the richest stuffs of India; the superfine 
dimities of Goudelour ; the handkerchiefs of Poulicat and Ma- 
zulipatam, and the muslins of Decca, plain, striped, embroider- 
ed, and transparent as the day; the baftas of Surat, so beauti- 
fully white, and chintzes of all colours, and of the rarest sort, 
with a sable ground and green sprigs. They unrolled the mag- 
nificent silks of China ; lampas pinked into transparency ; satiny- 
white damasks ; some of a meadow-green, others of a dazzling 
red ; rose-coloured taffetas, satins in whole bales, Pekins soft as 
wool, white and yellow nankeens, and even the stuffs of Mada- 

Madame dela Tour gave her daughter permission to purchase 
whatever pleased her, carefully examining however the quality 
of the goods and their prices, lest the merchants should impose 
upon her. Virginia made choice of what she thought would 
be agreeable to her mother, to Margaret, and to Paul. " This," 
said she, " will be useful for furniture, that for Domingo and 
" MarijP In short, the bag of piastres was expended before she 
thought of her own wants, It became necessary to cull her por- 


lion out of the presents which she had distributed among the 

Paul, overwhelmed with sorrow at the sight of these gifts of 
fortune, which presaged the departure of Virginia came to my 
house a few days afterwards ; he said to me with a melancholy 
air: " My sister is going to leave us; preparations are already 
" made for her departure. Come over to our habitation I en- 
u treat you, and make use of your influence on the minds of her 
" mother and of mine." I accordingly yielded to his importu- 
nity, though well assured that my representations would be in- 

If Virginia had appeared beautiful to me in her dress of blue 
Bengal cloth, with a red handkerchief tied round her head, how 
was she improved when I saw her habited like the ladies of this 
country! She was dressed in white muslin, lined with rose co- 
loured taffeta : her stays displayed to great advantage her ele- 
gant and majestic shape ; and her beautiful flaxen hair, in long 
double tresses, adorned her virgin head : her fine blue eyes had 
assumed a cast of melancholy, and the agitation which her heart 
endured, by struggling with a smothered passion, gave a glow- 
ing tint to her complexion, and tones full of emotion to her voice. 
The very contrast of her elegant dress, which she seemed to 
wear against her will, rendered her languor still more affecting. 
No one could see or hear her without being moved. PauPs 
sadness was increased by it. Margaret, afflicted at her son's 
situation, took him apart, and thus addressed him : " Why, my 
" son, do you feed yourself with false hopes, which only serve 
u to render the disappointment of them more bitter? It is now 
" time to disclose to you the secret of your life, and of my own. 
u Mademoiselle de la Tour is related by her mother's side to a 
" person of immense wealth, and of high rank. As to yourself, 
u you are only the son of a poor low-born woman ; and, what is 
" still worse, you are a bastard." 

The word bastard greatly surprized Paul; he had never heard 
it made use of before, and he asked his mother the meaning of 
it: she replied, " you had no legitimate father; when I was a 
" girl, love betrayed me into a folly, of which you are the fruit. 
" My frailty deprived you of the family of your father, and my 
" repentance of that of your mother. Unfortunate boy! I am 


" the only relation you have in the World." She concluded by 
bursting into a flood of tears. Paul, folding her in his arms, 
exclaimed : " Alas ! my mother, since I have no other relation 
" but you, I will love you still the more : but what a secret have 
" you just divulged to me! I now plainly perceive the reason 
" why Mademoiselle de la Tourhas for these two months shun- 
" ned me, and which has at length determined her to take her 
" departure. Alas? without doubt she despises me! 1 ' 

However, the hour of supper came ; each of the guests took 
a place at table, agitated with different passions ; they ate little, 
and did not utter a single syllable. Virginia retired first, and 
came and seated herself on the spot where we now are : Paul 
soon followed, and placed himself by her side : a profound si- 
lence ensued for some time. It was one of those delightful 
nights, so common between the Tropics, and whose beauty 
baffles all description. The moon appeared in the middle of 
the firmament, enveloped with a cloudy curtain, which was 
gradually dissipated by her rays. Her light insensibly dif- 
fused itself over the mountains of the island, and over their 
peaks, which glittered with a silvery verdure. Not a breath of 
wind was to be heard. In the woods, at the bottom of the val- 
ley, and at the top of these rocks, the soft warblings and gentle 
murmurings of the birds, which were caressing each other in 
their nests, delighted with the beauty of the night, and the tran- 
quillity of the air, stole on the ear. All, even to the very in- 
sects, were humming along the grass ; the stars, twinkling in 
the Heavens, reflected their trembling images on the surface of 
the Ocean. As Virginia was surveying, with wandering eyes, 
the vast and gloomy horizon, distinguishable from the shores of 
the island by the red fires of the fishermen, she perceived, at 
the entrance of the port, a light fixed to a large dark body ; it 
was the lanthorn on the vessel in which she was to embark for 
Europe, and which, ready to set sail, only lay at anchor till the 
breeze should spring up. At this sight she was so deeply af- 
fected that she turned her head aside, lest Paul should perceive 
her tears. 

Madame de la Tour, Margaret and I, were seated a few paces 
from them, under the shade of the banana tree? ; and, owin^ to 


the stillness of the night, we distinctly heard their conversation, 
which I shall never forget. 

Paul said to her : " I understand, madam, that you are to 
" take your departure hence in three days : have you no ap- 
" prehension at the thought of exposing yourself to the dangers 

" of the Sea the Sea at which you used to be so terrified ?" 

" It is my duty, you know," replied Virginia, " to obey the 
" commands of my relations." " You are going, then," said 
Paul, " to quit our society for a female relation who lives far 
" from hence, and whom you have never seen !" — " Alas !" re- 
turned Virginia, " had I been permitted to follow my own in- 
" clination I should have remained here all my life long ; but 
" my mother is of a contrary opinion, and my confessor has told 
" me it is the will of GOD that I should depart ; that life is a 
" state of probation Alas ! how severe that probation is !" 

" How," replied Paul, " so many reasons to determine thee 
" to leave us, and not one to induce thee to remain ! Ah ! of the 
" former there is still one which you have not mentioned : the 
" attractions which wealth holds out are powerful. You will 
" soon find, in a world entirely new to you, another person on 
" whom to bestow the name of brother, by which you now no 
" longer address me : you will find this brother among your 
" equals, and such as have riches and high birth, which I can 
" never offer you. But, whither can you go to be more happy 
" than where you are ? On what land can you set your foot 
" dearer to you than that which gave you being ? Where can 
" you find a society more amiable than that one of which you 
" are entirely beloved ? How can you exist without the caresses 
" of your mother, to which you have been so long accustomed ? 
" What will become of your mother herself, already far ad- 
" vanced in life, when she no longer sees you by her side, at 
" her table, in the house, and in her walks, where you used to 
" be her support ? To what a state Will my parent be reduced, 
" who is as fondly attached to you as your own . ? What can I 
" say to give them consolation, when I see them mourning your 
u absence .^ Cruel girl! I say nothing of myself; but, What 
" shall become of me, when in the morning I no longer enjoy 
" your company, and when night comes on, without bringing 
" us together again : and when I shall behold these palm-trees. 


" planted at our birth, and which so long have been the witness' 
" es of our mutual affection. Ah ! since a new destiny attracts 
" you ; since you will seek other countries far from the spot 
" where you was born, and other possessions than those which 
" the labour of my hands has procured for you, allow me to ac- 
u company you in your voyage ; I will encourage you during 
" those tempests which caused such apprehensions in you while 
" on shore. Thy head shall repose upon my bosom ; I will 
" clasp thee to my breast ; and, in France, whither thou art 
" going in quest of fortune and of greatness, I will follow thee 
" as thy slave ; in the palaces where I shall behold thee served 
" and adored, I will rejoice at thy happiness ; even then I shall 
" be rich enough to offer thee the greatest of sacrifices, by dy- 
" ing at thy feet." 

His voice was entirely stifled with sobbing ; we presently 
heard that of Virginia, who addressed him in these words, fre- 
quently interrupted by sighs " It is for thy sake that I go 

" away for thee, whom I have daily seen bowed down to the 

" ground, labouring to support two infirm families. If I have 
" embraced this opportunity of acquiring wealth, it is only to 
" return a thousand fold the good which thou hast done to us 
" all. Can there be a fortune worthy of thy friendship ? Why 
" mention thy birth to me ? Ah ! were it even possible that 
" another brother should be offered to me, could I choose any 
" but thee ? Oh, Paul! Paul ! thou art far dearer to me than 
" a brother. What a struggle hath it cost me to keep thee at 
" a distance ! I even wished thee to assist me in separating me 
" from myself, till Heaven could bless our union. But now, I 
" remain ! I depart ! I live ! I die ! Do what thou wilt with 
" me : Oh, irresolute girl that I am ! I had fortitude to repel 
" thy caresses, but thy sorrow quite overpowers me." 

At these words Paul took her in his arms, and holding her 
closely embraced, exclaimed with a terrible voice : " I am re- 
" resolved to go with her, nor shall any thing shake my resolu- 
" tion." We immediately flew toward him, and Madame de 
la Tour addressed him in these words : " My son, should you 
" go away what is to become of us ?" 

He repeated these words, shuddering : My son, my son ! 

H Dost thou." cried he. " act the part of a mother, thou, wflo 


" separatest brother and sister ? We both were nourished by thy 
" milk ; we both were nursed upon thy knees ; from thee too 
" we learnt to love each other ; we have said so to each other 
" a thousand times ; yet now you are going to remove her from 
" me ; you are not only sending her to Europe, that barbarous 
" country which denied thyself shelter, but even to those cruel 
" relations who abandoned you. You may say to me, You have 
" no authority over her, she is not your sister: Yes she is every 
" thing to me, my riches, my family, my birth, my all ; I know 
" no other blessing ; we were brought up under the same roof, 
" we reposed in the same cradle, and the same grave shall con- 
" tain us. If she goes, I am resolved to follow. The Governor 
" will prevent me ! Can he prevent me from throwing myself 
" into the Sea ? I will swim after her ; the Sea cannot be more 
" fatal to me than the dry land. As I cannot live near her, 1 
" shall at least have the satisfaction of dying before her eyes, far, 
" far from thee. Barbarous mother ! pitiless woman ! Oh, may 
" that Ocean, to the perils of which thou art going to expose 
" her, never give her back to thy arms ! May these billows bear 
" my body back to thee, and casting it, together with her's, on 
" this rocky shore, cause an eternal melancholy to settle on thee, 
" by presenting to thy view the unhappy fate of thy two chil- 
" dren." 

While he spake I seized him in my arms, for I perceived 
that despair had overpowered his reason : his eyes sparkled ; 
large drops of sweat ran down his inflamed countenance ; his 
knees trembled, and I felt his heart beat with redoubled violence 
in his burning bosom. 

Virginia, terrified, said to him : " Oh, my friend, I swear, 
" by the pleasures of our early age, by thy misfortunes and 
" my own, and by all that ever could unite two unfortunate 
" wretches, that if I remain here I will only live for thee ; and 
" if I depart I will one day return to be thine. I call you to 
" witness, all ye who have watched over my infant steps, you 
" who have the disposal of my life, and who now behold the tears 
" which I shed : I swear it, by high Heaven, which now hears 
" i me ; by that Ocean which I am going to brave : by the air 
u which I breathe, and which hitherto I have never polluted 
•' with a falsehood." 


As the heat of the Sun dissolves and precipitates an icy rock 
from the summit of the Appenines, so did the impetuous rage 
of this young man subside at the voice of the beloved object. 
His lofty head drooped down, and a torrent of tears gushed 
from his eyes. His mother, mingling her own tears with his, 
held him locked in her arms, without the power of utterance. 
Madame de la Tour, quite distracted, said to me : " I can con- 
" tain myself no longer: my soul is torn with contending pas- 
" sions. This unfortunate voyage shall not take place. Do, my 
" dear neighbour, endeavour to persuade my son to accompany 
" you homewards : eight days have elapsed since any of us have 
" enjoyed a single moment of sleep." 

I accordingly said to Paul: My good friend, your sister shall 
" remain with us ; to-morrow we will mention the matter to the 
u Governor ; meanwhile leave your family to repose, and come 
" and pass the night at my habitation. It is late, it is midnight : 
" the cross of the South is directly over the horizon." 

He allowed me to conduct him in silence. After a very rest- 
less night he rose at day-break, and returned to his own home. 

But wherefore should I continue the recital of this melan- 
choly story to you any longer ? There is only one agreeable 
side to contemplate in human life. Like the Globe on which 
we revolve, our rapid career is only that of a day, and part 
of that day cannot receive illumination till the other be involved 
in darkness. 

" Father," said I to him, " I must entreat you to finish the 
" account of what you have begun in a manner so affecting. 
" Images of happiness delight the fancy, but the recital of mis- 
" fortunes conveys instruction to the mind. I am anxious to 
" learn what become of the unfortunate Paul" 

The first object which struck Paul, on his return to the plan- 
tation, was the negress Mary, who, mounted on a rock, had her 
eyes stedfastly fixed on the main Ocean. The moment that 
he perceived her he exclaimed: "Where is Virginia:" Mary 
turned her head toward her young master and burst into tears. 
Paul, in delirium, turned round, and flew to the port. He there 
learned that Virginia had embarked at day-break, that the ves- 
sel had set sail immediately, and was now no longer in sight 


He directed his steps back to his place of habitation, and walked 
up and down in profound silence. 

Although this enclosure of rocks appears almost perpendicu- 
lar behind us, those green flats which subdivide their heights 
are so many stages, by which you arrive, bv means of some in- 
tricate paths, at the foot of that inclining and inaccessible cone 
of rocks, which is called the Thumb. At the bottom of this 
rock is an esplanade, covered with great trees, but so lofty and 
so steep that they appear like a large forest in the air, surround- 
ed with fearful precipices. The clouds which the summit of 
the Thumb attracts continually around it, incessantly feed se- 
veral cascades of water, which are precipitated to such a depth 
into the bottom ofthe valley, situated at the back of this moun- 
tain, that when you are at it's top you no longer hear the noise 
of their fall. From this place a great part of the island is per- 
ceptible, as well as the peaks of several of it's mountains ; among 
others, those of Piterboth, and of the Three Paps, and their val- 
leys covered with forests ; then the open Sea, and the Island of 
Bourbon, which is forty leagues to the westward. From this 
elevation Paul perceived the vessel which bare away Virginia. 
He descried it at more than ten leagues distance, like a black 
speck in the middle of the vast Ocean. He spent a considera- 
ble part of the day in contemplating it, and though it had actu- 
ally disappeared from his sight, he still imagined that he per- 
ceived it ; and when he had entirely lost it in the thick vapour 
of the horizon, he seated himself in this desolate spot, which is 
always agitated by the winds which blow incessantly on the tops 
of the palm-trees, and of the tatamaques. Their loud and hol- 
low murmurs resemble the deep tones of an organ, and inspire 
a profound melancholy. 

There I found Paul, his head leaning against the rock, and 
his eyes rivetted to the ground. I had been seeking him since 
sun-rise, and it was with much difficulty that I could prevail on 
him to descend, and re-visit his family. At length however I 
brought him back to his habitation ; but the moment he cast his 
on Madame de la Tour, he began to reproach her bitterly 
for having so cruelly deceived him. She informed us, that a 
breeze having sprung up about three in the morning, and the 
■1 being in full trim to depart, the Governor, attended '■ 

\ OL. III. H 


principal officers and the missionary, came with a palanquin tu 
carry off Virginia ; and in spite of her expostulations, her tears 
and those of Margaret, all of them exclaiming that it was for 
their interest, had hurried away her daughter, who was almost 
expiring. " Alas !" exclaimed Paid, " if I had only enjoyed 
" the satisfaction of bidding her farewel, I should now have 
" been happy. I would have said to her ; Virginia, if during 
" the time that we have lived together, I have made use of any 
" one word which may have given you offence, tell me that I 
" have your forgiveness, before we part forever. I would have 
" said ; Since Fate has decreed an eternal separation, adieu my 
u dear Virginia, adieu ; may you live, far from hence, contented 
" and happy." Perceiving Madame de la Tour and his mother 
weeping: " Go," said he to them, " go, and seek some other 
" hand than mine to wipe away your tears." He then hastened 
from them, sighing deeply, and wandered up and down through 
the plantation. He went over all those places which had been 
the most favourite retreats of Virginia. He said to her goats, 
and to the kids, which followed him bleating: " What do you 
" ask of me ? Alas ! you will never more see in my company 
u the person whose hand used to feed you." He then wander- 
ed to Virginians Rest, and at sight of the birds which fluttered 
around him, he exclaimed : " Unhappy songsters ! No longer 
" will you fly to meet her from whom you received your nou- 
" rishment." Perceiving Ficlele following the scent up and 
down, and ranging around, he sighed, and said to him : " Alas! 
" thou wilt never find her more !" At length he went and seat- 
ed himself on the rock where he had spoken to her the evening 
before ; and, at sight of the Sea where he had perceived the ves- 
sel disappear, he wept bitterly. 

We followed him however step by step, fearing lest the agi- 
tation of his mind should take some fatal turn. His mother 
and Madame de la Tour entreated him, by the most tender ap- 
pellations, not to aggravate their affliction by his despair. At 
length the latter calmed him in some degree, by lavishing upon 
him the names which were most calculated to revive his hopes. 
She called him her son, her dear son, her son-in-law, the only 
person on whom she intended to bestow her daughter. She at 
length persuaded him to return to the house and take some nou 


rishment. He seated himself at table with us, near the spot 
where the companion of his infancy used to place herself ; and 
as if she had still occupied it, he addressed himself to her, and 
tendered that food which he knew was most agreeable to her; 
but, perceiving his error, he burst into tears. For some days 
following he collected every thing which she was accustomed 
to keep for her particular use ; the last nosegay which she had 
worn, and a cup made of the cocoa-nut out of which she usually 
drank : and as if these reliques of his friend had been the most 
precious treasures in the World, he kissed them, and put them 
in his bosom. The ambergris does not shed so sweet a per- 
fume as those things which have been touched by a beloved 
object. But Paul at length perceiving that his dejection only 
augmented that of his mother, and of Madame de la Tour y and 
likewise observing that the necessities of the family called for 
continual labour, he began with Domingo's help to repair the 

In a short time this young man, before as indifferent as a Creole 
about what was passing in the World, entreated me to teach him 
to read and to write, that he might be able to keep up a corres- 
pondence with Virginia. He afterwards seemed eager to be 
instructed in geography, in order to form an idea of the country 
whither she was steering, and in history, that he might learn 
what were the manners of the people among whom she was go- 
ing to live. Thus did he attain to perfection in agriculture, and 
in the art of disposing in order the most irregular spot of ground, 
merely by the sentiment of love. Doubtless, it is to the delights 
of this ardent and restless passion, that men must ascribe the 
origin of the generality of arts and sciences ; and it is from it': 
privations, that the philosophy derives it's birth, which teaches 
us to console ourselves for every loss. Thus Nature, having 
made love the bond of union to all created beings, has rendered 
it the grand moving principle of Society, and the principal 
source of our illuminations and of our pleasures. 

Paid did not greatly relish the study of geography, which, in- 
stead of unfolding the nature of each country, only presents it's 
political divisions. History, and especially modern history, did 
not interest him much more. It only presented to his mmd 
general and periodical misfortunes, the reason of which it w;i*; 


impossible for him to penetrate ; wars without a cause, and 
with no object in view ; contemptible intrigues ; nations desti- 
tute of character, and sovereigns without a principal of human- 
ity. He even preferred to such reading, that of romance, 
which having only in view the feelings and the interests of Man, 
sometimes displayed situations similar to his own. According- 
ly, no book delighted him so much as Telemachus, from the 
pictures which it delineates of a country life, and of the pas- 
sions which are natural to the human heart. He read to his mo- 
ther and to Madame de la Tour, those passages which affected 
him the most : at times, mournful recollections striking his 
mind, he lost the power of utterance, and tears gushed from his 
eyes. He thought he could trace the dignity and the wisdom 
of Antiope, together with the misfortunes and the tenderness of 
Eucharis in his beloved Virginia. On the other hand, he was 
quite shocked at reading our fashionable romances, so full of 
licentious maxims and manners ; and when he understood that 
these romances displayed a real picture of European nations, 
he feared, and not without reason, that Virginia might be there 
corrupted, and cast him from her remembrance. 

In truth near two years had elapsed before Madame de la 
Tour heard any intelligence of her aunt, or of her daughter : 
she had only been informed by the report of a stranger, that 
the latter had arrived safely in France. At length however 
she received, by a vessel on her way to India, a pacquet, toge- 
ther with a letter in Virginia's own hand-writing ; and, not- 
withstanding the circumspection of her amiable and gentle 
daughter, she apprehended her to be very unhappy. This let- 
ter so well depicted her situation and her character, that I have 
retained it in my memory almost word for word : 

" My dear and much-loved Mother ', 

" I have already written to you several letters, in my own 
" hand ; but as I have received no answer, I must suspect that 
14 they have never reached you. I hope this will be more for- 
" tunate, both from the precaution which I have taken to send 
" you news of myself, and to receive your's in return. 

" Many tears have I shed since our separation, I, who scarce- 
•' ly ever before wept, except at the misfortunes of another ! On 


" my arrival, n aunt was much surprized when on ques- 

" tioning me c g my attainments, I informed her that I 

" could neither r^ i nor write. She aked me what I had been 
" doing then since I came into the World ; and when I told her 
" that my whole st tdy had been the care of a family, and obe- 
" diencetoyou, she replied, that I had received the education 
" of a menial servant. The day following, she placed me as a 
" boarder in a large convent near Paris, where I had masters 
" of every description : among other things, they instructed me 
" in history, in geography, in grammar, in mathematics, and in 
41 horsemanship ; but my inclination for all these sciences was 
" so faint, that I profited very little by the lessons of the gentle- 
" men who taught them. I feel that I am a poor creature, and 
" of little spirit, as they interpret the word here. My aunt's 
" kindness however does not diminish : she is continually giving 
" me new dresses, according to the season : I have two women 
" to attend me, who are habited as elegantly as ladies of quality. 
" She has likewise made me assume the title of Countess, but 
" has obliged me to relinquish the name of La Tour, which 
" was as dear to me as to yourself, from the troubles which you 
" have told me my poor father underwent, to obtain you in 
" marriage. She has substituted your family name in it's place, 
" which I likewise esteem, because it was your's when a girl. 
" As she has raised me to a situation so exalted, I entreated 
" her to send you some supply : How can I repeat her answer ? 
" You however have always commanded me to speak the truth ; 
" this then was her reply, that a small matter would be of no 
" use to you ; and that, in the simple style of life which you 
" lead, a great deal would only embarrass you. 

" At first I attempted to communicate to you tidings of nr 
" situation, by the hand of another as I was incapable of writ- 
" ing myself ; but not being able to find, since my arrival here, 
" a single person on whose fidelity I could rely, I applied my- 
" self night and day to the means of learning how to read and 
" write ; and by the assistance of Heaven I accomplished 
u in a very little time. I entrusted the ladies who attend 
" with the dispatch of my former letters, but I have reason to 
u suspect that they delivered them to my grand-aunt. Oil 
u present occasion, I have had recourse to one of mv fri< 


u who is a fellow-boarder ; and under her address, which I have 
" subjoined, I must beg you to convey an answer. My grand- 
u aunt has prohibited all foreign correspondence, which might, 
" as she alleges, oppose insurmountable obstacles to the splendid 
" views which she entertains with regard to me. The only per- 
" son, beside herself, who visits me at the grate, is an old noble- 
" man of her acquaintance, who she informs me has taken a 
" great liking to my person. To say truth, I have not the least 
" for him, even were it possible I should conceive a partiality 
" for any one whatever. 

" I live in the midst of gaudy wealth, and have not the dis- 
" posal of a single farthing. They tell me that if I had the 
" command of money, it might lead to dangerous consequences. 
" My very gowns are the property of my waiting-women, who 
" are disputing which shall have them even before I have left 
" them off myself. In the very bosom of riches I am much 
" poorer than when I was with you, for I have nothing to give 
" away. When I found that the many magnificent accomplish- 
" ments which I was destined to acquire, were not to procure 
" me the power of doing the smallest good, I had recourse to 
" my needle, in the use of which by good fortune, you had in- 
" structed me. I accordingly send you some pairs of stockings, of 
" my own manufacture, for yourself and my mamma Margaret ; 
" a cap for Domingo, and one of my red handkerchiefs for Ma- 
" ry : I enclose you, likewise, in this pacquet, the kernels of the 
" fruits of which our deserts are composed, together with the 
" seeds of all kinds of trees, which I gathered during my hours 
" of recreation in the garden of the convent. To these I also 
" add the seeds of the violet, the daisy, the butter-flower, the 
" P°PP V » tne blue-bottle, and the scabious, which I have picked 
" up in the fields. In the meadows of this country the flowers 
" are far more beautiful than in ours, but no one pays any regard 
" to them. I am veiy well assured, that you and my mamma 
" Margaret will be much better pleased with this bag of seeds 
" than with the bag of piastres which was the cause of our separa- 
" tion, and of the tears which I have since shed. I shall feel the 
" greatest pleasure, if one day you have the satisfaction of seeing 
• apple-trees growing beside our bananas, and beech-trees mix- 


" ing their foliage with that of the cocoas : you will fancy your- 
'* self in Normandy again, which you still love so much. 

" You enjoin me to communicate to you my joy and my sor 
" rows : joy I can never experience when at a distance from 
" you ; and as for my sorrows, I soothe them by reflecting that 
" I am in a situation where you thought proper to place me, in 
" obedience to the will of Heaven. My most cruel mortification 
" is that not a single person here mentions your name to me, and 
" that I am not allowed to talk of you to any one. My waiting- 
" women, or rather those of my grand-aunt, for they are her's 
" more than mine, tell me, when I attempt to converse about 
" those objects which are so dear to me: Madam, remember 
" that you are now a Frenchwoman, and that you must forget 
" the country of savages. Ah ! I shall sooner forget myself 
" than forget the place where I was born, and where you still 
" live ! It is the country where I am, which to me is the coun- 
" try of savages, for I live alone, without a single person to 
" whom I can communicate that love for you which I shall car- 
" ry with me to the grave. 

" Dear and much-loved mother, I remain your obedient and 
" affectionate daughter. 

" Virginia de la Tour." 

" I recommend to your kindest regards Mary and Domingo^ 
" who took such care of my infancy : stroke Fidele for me, who 
" found me again when I was lost in the woods." 

Paul was much surprized that Virginia, '^ad not made th< 
least mention of him ; she who had not even forgotten the house- 
dog : he was entirely ignorant that be the letter of a female as 
long as it may, the fondest idea alwavs comes in last. 

In a postscript Virginia particularly recommended to Paul 
two kinds of seeds, those of the violet and of the scabious. She 
gave him some information respecting the characters of these 
plants, and about the places in which it was most proper to sou 
them. The violet, she told him, produced a small flower of a 
deep purple hue, which delights to hide itself under the bushes, 
but is soon discovered by it's delicious perfume. She desired 
him to plant it on the brink of the fountain, at the foot of her 
r ocoa-trce. " The scabious," added she, " bears a pretty flower 


" of a pale blue, and it's bottom is black, interspersed with white 
" spots. One would think it to be in mourning : it is likewise 
" for this very reason called the widow's flower. It flourishes 
tt best in places rugged and agitated by the winds." She re- 
quested him to sow it on the rock where she had talked with 
him by night, for the last time, and to give that rock, for her 
sake, the name of Rock-Farewel. 

She had inclosed these seeds in a little purse, the embroidery 
of which was very simple, but which appeared inestimable to 
Paul, when he perceived a P and a V interwoven in it, and 
formed of hair, which he knew from it's beauty to be that of 

The letter of this sensible and virtuous young lady drew tears 
from the whole family. Her mother replied in the name of the 
rest, desiring her either to remain or return as she thought best, 
but assuring her that they had all lost the greatest portion of 
their happiness since her departure, and that tor herself in par- 
ticular she was quite inconsolable. 

Paul wrote her a very long letter, in which he assured her 
that he would render the garden worthy to receive her; and in 
like manner as she had interwoven their names in her purse, 
so would he mingle the plants of Europe with those of Africa. 
He sent her some of the fruit of the cocoa-trees of her fountain, 
which had now arrived to perfect maturity. He added, that he 
would not send her any of the other seeds of the island, that the 
desire of seeing it's productions once more might determine her 
to return thither immediately. He importuned her to do this 
without delay, and thus gratify the ardent wishes of their family, 
and his own more particularly, as henceforward he could taste 
no joy at a distance from her. 

. Paul planted with the greatest care those European grains, 
and above all, those of the violet and of the scabious, the flow- 
ers of which seemed to have some analogy with the character 
and the situation of Virginia, who had so particularly recom- 
mended them to him : but whether they had been corrupted on 
their passage, or whether, which is more probable, the climate «. 
of that part of Africa was not favourable to them, only a very 
small number of them sprung, and even these never attained to 
a state of perfection. 


Envy meanwhile which frequently even outruns the happiness 
of man, especially in the French Colonies, soon circulated re- 
ports all over the island which gave Paul the greatest uneasi- 
ness. The people belonging to the vessel which had brought 
Virginia's letter asserted, that she was on the point of marriage ; 
they went so far as to name the nobleman who was to obtain her 
hand ; nay some even declared that the affair was over, and that 
they had been witnesses of it. Paul at first despised these ru- 
mours, conveyed by a trading-vessel which often brings false 
reports from the places which it touches at on it's passage ; but 
as many of the inhabitants of the island, from a perfidious pity, 
officiously interposed to condole with him on this event, he be- 
gan to give some credit to it. Besides in some of the romances 
which he had read he saw treachery treated with pleasantry, and 
as he knew that these books exhibited a faithful picture of the 
manners of Europe, he was apprehensive that the daughter of 
Madame de la Tour might have become corrupted, and have 
forgotten her earlier engagements. The light which he had ac- 
quired made him anticipate misery, and what gave a finish to 
his suspicions was, that several European vessels had arrived 
within the year, without bringing any news whatever of Vir- 

That unfortunate young man, abandoned to all the agitations 
©fa heart in love, came frequently to see me, in order to Con- 
or to dissipate his uneasiness, by my experience of the 

I live, as I have told you, about a league and a half from 
hence, on the bank of a small river which flows by Long Moun- 
tain. There I pass my life in solitude, without a wife, without 
ehildrenTmKTwithout slaves. 

Next to the rare felicity of finding a female partner perfectly 
suited to a man, the least unhappy situation is that of living 
alone. Every one who has had much reason to complain of 
Mankind seeks for solitude. Nay it is very remarkable, that 
all nations rendered miserable by their opinions, their manners, 
or bv their governments, have produced numerous classes of 
citizens entirely devoted to solitude and to celibacy. Such we;e 
the Egyptians in their decline, and the Greeks of the Lower 
Rmpire; and such are in our own davs the Indians, the Chi- 

Vol., HI. I 


nese, the modern Greeks, the Italians, and the greatest part of 
the eastern and southern Nations of Europe. Solitude, in some 
degree, brings Man back to his natural state of happiness, by re- 
moving the misfortunes of social life. In the midst of our so- 
cieties, torn asunder by so many prejudices, the soul is in a state 
of perpetual agitation ; it is continually revolving within itself a 
thousand turbulent and contradictory opinions, by which the 
members of an ambitious and miserable society are aiming at 
mutual subjection ; but in solitude iflllays aside those extraneous 
illusions which disturb it, and resumes the simple sentiment of it- 
self, of Nature, and of it's Author. Thus the muddy water of a 
torrent, which lays waste the country, spreading itself into some 
little bason remote from it's current, sinks the miry particles to 
the bottom of it's bed, recovers it's former limpidness, and hav-. 
ing again become transparent, reflects, together with it's owa 
banks, the verdure of the Earth and the light of the Heavens. 

Solitude restores the harmony of the body as well as that of 
the soul. It is among solitary classes of people that we find 
persons who live to the greatest age, as among the Bramins of 
India. In short, I believe it so necessary to happiness, even in 
the commerce of the World, that I conceive it impossible to taste 
a durable pleasure in it, be the sentiment what it may, or to regu- 
late our conduct by an established principle, unless wc form an 
internal solitude, from which our own opinion seldom takes it's 
departure, and into which that of another never enters. I do 
not however mean to assert that it is the duty of man to live 
entirely alone, for by his necessities he isHsited to the whole 
human race ; he for that reason owes his ilbour to Mankind, 
but he owes himself likewise to the rest of Nature. As GOD 
has given to each of us organs exactly suited to theeTements of 
the Globe on which we live, feet to the soil, lungs to the air, 
eyes to the light, without the power of interchanging the use of 
these senses : He, who is the author of life, has reserved for 
himself alone the heart, which is it's principal organ'. 

I pass my days then remote from men, whom I have wished 
to serve, and who have repaid me with "persecution. After 
having travelled over a great part of Europe, and several re- 
gions of America and of Africa, I am now settled in this island, 
poorly inhabited as it is, sedi^cl by the mildness of the air, 


and by it's enchanting solitudes. A cottage, which I have built 
in the forest at the foot of a tree, a little field cleared for culti- 
vation by my own hands, and a river which flows before my 
door, are fully adequate to all my wants, and all my pleasures. 
I add to these enjoyments a few good books, which teach me 
to become better : they even make the World, which I have 
quitted, still contribute to my happiness, by presenting me with 
pictures of those passions which render it's inhabitants so mise- 
rable ; and by the comparison which I make between their con- 
dition and my own, they procure for me a negative felicity. 
Like a man saved from shipwreck, seated on a rock I contem- 
plate in my solitude, the storms which are raging in the rest of 
the World ; nay my tranquillity is increased by the fury of the 
distant tempest. Since men stand no longer in my way, and as 
I am no longer in theirs, I have ceased to Late, and now I pity 
them. If I meet with any unfortunate wretch, I try to assist 
him by my counsels : as one passing along the brink of a tor- 
rent stretches out his hand to an unhappy creature drowning in 
it. I however have found innocence alone attentive to my 
voice. Nature to no purpose allures to herself the rest of man- 
kind ; each one forms in his mind an image of her, which he 
invests with his own passions. He pursues, through the whole 
of life, the vain phantom which still misleads him ; and he then 
complains to Heaven of the illusion which he had practised upon 
himself. Amongst a great number of unfortunate wretches 
whom I have endeavoured to bring back to Nature, I have not 
found a single one who was not intoxicated with his own mise- 
ries. They listened to me at first with attention, in hopes that 
I was going to assist them in acquiring either glory or fortune, 
but perceiving that I only meant to teach them to do without 
such things, they looked upon me myself as a miserable wretch, 
because I did not pursue their wretched felicity : they con- 
demned the solitary style of life which I led, pretended that 
they alone were useful to Mankind, and endeavoured to draw 
me into their vortex. But though my heart is open to all the 
World, my opinions are biassed by no one. I frequently find 
enough within my own breast to make me serve as a lesson to 
myself. In my present calm I make a second passage through 
th^ agitations of my own past life, which I once prized so high- 


ly ; the protections, the fortune, the reputation, the pleasures 
and the opinions, Avhich maintain a constant conflict all the 
World over. I compare those successive tribes of Men, whom 
I have seen contending with so much fury about mere chime- 
ras, and who are now no more, to the little waves of my rivu- 
let, which dash themselves foaming against the rocks of it's 
bed, and then disappear never more to return. For my own 
part, I jquietly commit myself to the river of time, to be borne 
down toward the ocean of futurity, which is circumscribed with 
no shores, and by contemplating the actual harmonies of Na- 
ture I raise myself toward it's Author, and thus console my- 
self with the expectation of h destiny more happy, in the World 
to come. 

Although the multiplicity of objects which from this eleva- 
tion now strike our view, are not perceptible from my hermit- 
age, which is situated in the centre of a forest, still the harmo- 
nies of that spot are very interesting, especially for a man who 
like me prefers retiring into himself to ranging abroad. The 
river which flows before my door passes in a straight line 
across the woods, so that my eye is struck with a long canal, 
overshadowed with trees of variegated foliage ; tatamaques, 
the ebony-tree, and what is here called apple-wood, olive-wood, 
and the cinnamon ; groves of palm trees here and there raise 
their long and naked columns more than a hundred feet high; 
on their tops clusters of palms grow, while they appear like one 
forest piled above another. There are likewise lianes of dif- 
ferent coloured leaves, and which, shooting their branches from 
one tree to another, form here arcades of flowers, and there 
long festoons of verdure. Aromatic odours issue from most 
of these trees and their perfumes attach themselves so strongly 
to the very clothes, that the smell adheres to a person who has 
crossed the forest for several hours afterwards. In the season 
when their flowers are in full bloom, you would think them half 
covered with snow. At the end of Summer several kinds of 
foreign birds come, by an unaccountable instinct, from unknown 
regions beyond the boundless Ocean, to pick up the seeds of the 
vegetables which this island produces, and oppose the brilliancy 
of their colours to the verdure of the trees, embrowned by the 
Sun, Among others, different kinds of parroquets, and blue 


pigeons, which are here called the pigeons of Holland. Mon- 
keys, the domesticated inhabitants of these forests, amuse them- 
selves among the dusky branches, from which they detach them- 
selves by their gray and greenish hair, with their faces entirely 
black ; some suspend themselves by the tail, balancing them- 
selves in the air; others leap from branch to branch, carrying 
their young ones in their arms. Never has the murderous fu- 
sil scared these peaceful children of Nature. Here nothing is 
heard but sounds of joy, the unknown warblings and the chirp- 
ing of some southern birds, which repeat the echoes of these 
forests from afar. The river, which flows bubbling over a rocky 
bed through the trees, reflects here and there in it's limpid 
stream, their venerable masses of verdure and of shade, as well 
as the gambols of the happy inhabitants : about a thousand pa- 
ces from hence, it precipitates itself down different stories of 
the rock, and forms in it's fall a smooth sheet of water as clear 
as crystal, which rolling down, breaks itself amidst billows of 
foam. A thousand confused noises proceed from these tumul- 
tuous waters, and when dispersed by the winds of the forest, 
they sometimes fly to a distance, and sometimes they rush on 
the ear all at once, and produce a stunning sound like that of 
the bells of a cathedral. The air, continually refreshed by 
the motion of this stream, keeps op upon the banks of the river, 
notwithstanding the burning heats of Summer, a verdure and a 
coolness, which are seldom found in this island even on the 
mountain tops. 

At some distance from thence there is a rock, remote enough 
from the cascade to prevent your being deafened with the noise 
of it's waters, and yet sufficiently near for you to enjoy the sight 
of their fall, their freshness, and their murmuring. During the 
excessive heats, Madame dc la Tour, Margaret, Virginia, Paul, 
and I, sometimes dined under the shade of this rock. As Vir- 
ginia always employed her minutest actions for the benefit of 
others, she never ate a fruit in the country without planting it's 
seed or it's kernel in the earth. " Trees," said she " will spring 
" from these, which may one day give their fruits to some tra 
" veller, or at least to some bird." Accordingly, once, when 
she had been enting part of a papaya at the foot of this rock, 
.she planted the seeds of the fruit ; there soon afterwards several 


papayas grew up, among which was a female plant, that is, one 
which bears fruit. This tree, at Virginia's departure, was not 
so high as her knee, but as it's growth is very rapid, it attained 
three years after to the height of twenty feet, and the higher 
part of it's trunk was surrounded with several rows of ripe 
fruit. Paul having by chance wandered to this place, was 
greatly delighted at beholding such a large tree, grown from a 
seed which he had seen planted by the hand of his friend; but 
at the same time he sunk into a profound melancholy, on ob- 
serving this testimony of her long absence. By objects which 
we habitually behold, we are unable to perceive with what rapi- 
dity our life passes away ; they as well as ourselves grow old, 
with an imperceptible decay: but those which we suddenly see 
again after several years absence, admonishes us of the swiftness 
with which the stream of our days flows on. Paul was as much 
surprized, and as sorrowful, at the sight of this large papaya 
loaded with fruit, as a traveller is, who on his return to his na- 
tive country after a long absence, finds those who were his con- 
temporaries to be no more, and sees their children, whom he 
had left at the breast, themselves become fathers of families. 
Sometimes he was going to cut it down, as it made him too 
sensible of the length of time which had elapsed since Virginia's 
departure ; at other times, considering it as a monument of her 
beneficence, he kissed it's trunk, and addressed to it these words, 
dictated by love and regret: " O tree, whose posterity still ex- 
** ists in our woods, I view thee with more concern and venera- 
" tion than the triumphal arches of the Romans ! May Nature, 
" which is daily destroying the monuments of the ambition of 
" Kings, multiply, in these forests, those of the beneficence of a 
" young and unfortunate girl." 

It was at the foot of this papaya-tree that I was certain of 
seeing Paul whenever he came to my habitation. I one day 
found him there plunged in melancholy, and I held a conversa- 
tion with him, which I will repeat to you, unless I tire you by 
my long digressions ; they however are pardonable in a person 
rf my age, and more so as they have a reference to my last 
friendship. I will relate it in form of a dialogue, that you may 
judge of the excellent natural sense of this young man, and it 


will be easy for you to discover who is the speaker, by the 
meaning of his questions and by my answers. 

He said to me : 

" I am very low spirited. Mademoiselle de la Tour has been 
*' gone these three years and a half ; and for a year and a half 
" past she has sent us no tidings of herself. She is rich, and I 
" am poor: she has certainly forgotten me. My inclination 
" prompts me strongly to embark for France ; I will enter into 
** the service of the King ; I will make a fortune, and the grand- 
" aunt of Mademoiselle de la Tour will give me her niece in 
" marriage when I shall have become a great Lord." 

Old Man.—-" My good friend, have you not told me that 
" your birth is ignoble ?" 

Paul. — u So my mother has told me ; for my own part I do 
" not so much as know the meaning of the word Birth. I never 
" discovered that I was more deficient there than another, or 
" that any other person possessed it more than I do." 

Old Man. — " Deficiency in point of birth will, in France, ef- 
" fectually exclude you from any distinguished employment , 
" what is more, no corps of any distinction will admit you." 

Paul. — " You have often informed me that one of the chief 
" causes of the present greatness of France was, that the lowest 
" subject might obtain the highest posts ; and you have given 
" me many instances of celebrated men, who rising from a low 
" condition, had done honour to their country. Do you mean 
" to damp my courage ?" 

Old Man. — " My son noWing is farther from my intention : 
" I told you the truth, but it related to times past. The face of 
" affairs in France is at present greatly altered ; every thing 
" there is now become venal ; all is the hereditary property of 
" a small number of families, or is divided among incorporated 
" associations. The King is a luminary surrounded by the no- 
" bility, and by different corps, as by so many clouds, and it is 
" hardly possible that one of his rays should fall upon you. For- 
" merly, in an administration less complicated, such phenomena 
u were to be seen. Then talents and merit were disclosed on 
" every side, as the fresh grounds, which have just been clear 
" ed, are productive with all their rich juices. But great Kingt-, 
• who know Mankind, and how to make choice anr 


" are very rare. Kings in general allow themselves to be bias- 
" sed by the grandees, and by the associations which surround 
" them." 

Paul. — " But probably I shall find one of those great men, 
" who will take me under his protection." 

Old Man. — " The protection of the great is to be obtained 
" only by serving either their ambition or their pleasure. You 
" can never succeed with them, for your birth is mean, and your 
" probity is untainted." 

Paul. — " But I will perform actions so daring, I will keep 
" my promises so inviolate, I will so punctually fulfil the duties 
"of my situation, I will be so zealous and so constant in my 
" friendships, as to merit adoption from some of them, which I 
" have seen frequently to be the case in those ancient histories 
" which you gave me to read." 

Old Man. — " Ah, my good friend ! among the Greeks and 
" Romans, even in their decline, the higher orders of men al- 
" ways paid respect to virtue ; we have indeed a great number 
" of celebrated personages of all descriptions starting up from 
" among the common people, but I do not know of a single one 
" who has been adopted into a family of rank. Were it not 
" for our Kings, Virtue would in France be condemned to an 
" eternal Plebeianism. As I have often told you, they some- 
" times honour virtue when they perceive it ; but in the present 
" day, the distinction which in justice it ought to obtain, is to 
" be purchased only with money." 

Paul. — " In case then I do novprocure support from the 
M Great, I will endeavour to render myself useful to some 
" corps. I will adopt it's spirit and it's opinions entirely ; I 
" will make myself to be beloved." 

Old Man. — " You will act then like other men ! you will sa- 
'* crifice your integrity to purchase fortune :" 

Paul. — " Oh, no ! the search of truth shall be my only aim." 

Old Man. — " Instead of making yourself to be beloved, you 
c will most probably expose yourself to hatred. Beside, incor- 
" porated associations interest themselves very little in the dis- 
" covery of truth. To the ambitious every opinion is indifFe 
1 provided they domineer. 1 ' 


PauU — " How unfortunate am I! I am discouraged on every 
'* side. I am doomed to pass my life in labour and obscurity, 
44 far from Virginia.'''' And he heaved a deep sigh. 

Old Man. — " Let the Almighty be your only patron, and the 
" human race your corps ; be firmly attached both to the one 
" and to the other. Families, Associations, Nations and Kings, 
41 have their prejudices and their passions, and vice must often 
44 be committed, in order to serve them as they desire. But to 
44 serve GOD and the human race, we have occasion to exer- 
44 cise virtue only. 

44 But why do you wish to be distinguished from the rest of 
" Mankind ? It is an unnatural sentiment, for if it were uni- 
44 versal every man would be at war with his neighbour. Sa- 
" tisfy yourself with fulfilling the duties of that station in which 
" Providence has placed you : rejoice in your destiny, which 
" allows you to maintain your integrity pure, and does not 
" oblige you, in imitation of the great, to place your happiness 
" in the opinion of the lower ranks ; nor, in imitation of the 
" lower, to cringe to superiors, in order to procure the means 
41 of subsistence. You are in a country, and in a situation, 
" where you can find a living without any occasion to deceive, 
u to flatter, or to debase yourself, as the generality of those are 
" obliged to do who pursue fortune in Europe ; in a situation, 
" where your condition does not prohibit your exercising any 
" virtue where you can with impunity be good, faithful, sin- 
" cere, intelligent, patient, temperate, chaste, indulgent, pious; 
" and where no malignant ftieer will interpose to blast your 
" wisdom, which is still only in the bud. Heaven has bestow- 
u ed on you liberty, health, a good conscience, and friends : 
" Kings, whose favour you are so ambitious of obtaining, are 
41 not near so happy." 

Paul. — " Alas ! Virginia is still wanting to me : without 
M her I have nothing ; with her I should possess every thing. 
44 She alone is my birth, my glory, and my fortune : but her 
4k aunt must no doubt have bestowed her in marriage on a man 
44 of high reputation ! By means of books and study however 
41 men may become learned and celebrated : I will acquire 
44 knowledge, by dint of intense application : I will render a 
44 useful service to my country by my superior illumination, and 

Vol. III. K 


" will neither offend any one, nor be dependent on him : my 
" fame will be illustrious, and the glory which I may obtain will 
" be entirely my own." 

Old Man — " My son, talents are still more rare than either 
" birth or riches ; and doubtless they are the most invaluable 
" possessions, because nothing can deprive us of them, and be- 
'* cause they universally conciliate public esteem. But they 
" cost a man dear ; they are to be obtained only by privations 
" of every kind ; by an exquisite sensibility, which renders us 
" unhappy both at home and abroad, from the persecution of 
" our contemporaries. In France, the lawyer does not envy 
" the glory of the soldier, nor the soldier that of the sailor, but 
" every body will thwart you there, because every body piques 
" himself on his understanding. You will serve Mankind, you 
" say. But the person who produces them a single sheaf of 
" corn from the ground, does them a far more profitable ser- 
*' vice than he who gives them a book." 

Paul. — " Oh ! she who planted this papaya has given the in- 
" habitants of these forests a much more useful and delightful 
" present, than if she had given them a library :" and as he 
spake he took the tree in his arms, and kissed it with transport. 

Old Man. — " The best book that ever was written, which in- 
" culcates only the doctrines of friendship, equality, humanity 
" and concord, namely the Gospel, has served, for many ages 
** past, as a pretext for the ravages of European cruelty. How 
tc many public and private tyrannies are daily practized on the 
11 Earth in it's name ! After that who can flatter himself with the 
" hope of being useful to Mankind by a book ? Call to mind 
" what has been the fate of most of those Philosophers who 
" preached up wisdom to Man. Homer, who clothed it in ver- 
" ses so beautiful, was reduced to beg his bread all his life long. 
" Socrates, who gave to the Athenians such excellent lessons of 
" it, both by his discourses and by his manners, was condemn- 
" ed to swallow poison, by the sentence of a court of justice. 
<c His sublime disciple, Plato, was doomed to slavery by order 
" of the very Prince who protected him ; and before their time, 
<w Pythagoras, who extended his humanity even to the brute 
" creation, was burnt alive by the Crotonians. What do I say ? 
" The greatest part of these illustrious names have descended 


• to us disfigured by some traits of satire which characterize 
" them ; for human ingratitude delights to lay hold on these : 
" if however among the crowd, the glory of any one hath reach- 
" ed our ears, pure and untainted, it must have been such as 
" have lived far from the society of their contemporaries ; like 
" those statues which are extracted entire out of the fields of 
»* Greece and Italy, and which, by being buried in the bosom of 
w the earth, have escaped the fury of barbarians. 

M You see, then, that to acquire the tempestuous glory of li- 
u terary fame, it is necessary to exercise much virtue, and to 
" be ready to sacrifice life itself. Besides, do you imagine that 
" this glory interests wealthy people in France ? they greatly 
" caress literary men, whose learning does not raise them to 
" any dignity in their country, nor to any situation under go- 
" vernment, nor procure them admission at Court. Persecu- 
" tion is little practized in this age, so indifferent as it is to eve- 
" ry thing except fortune and pleasure ; but knowledge and 
" virtue seldom raise a person there to a distinguished rank, 
a because every thing in the state is to be procured with money. 
H Formerly these qualities were sure of meeting a recompense, 
" by places either in the church, in the magistracy, or in the 
a administration ; but at present they are only good for mak- 
" ing books. This fruit, however, so little prized by the men 
u of the World, is ever worthy of it's celestial origin. It is to 
" these very books that the honour is reserved, of bestowing 
a lustre on obscure virtue, of consoling the unfortunate, of en- 
" lightening Nations, and of fieclaring the truth even to Kings. 
" It is undoubtedly the most sacred office with which Heaven 
u can invest a mortal on this Earth. Where is the man who 
" has it not in his power to console himself for the injustice, or 
" the contempt, of those who have the disposal of fortune, when 
" he reflects that his work will be handed' down from age to age, 
M from nation to nation, and will serve as a barrier against er- 
" ror and tyranny ; and that, from the bosom of the obscurity 
* in which he has lived, a glory may issue which shall eclipse 
" that of the greatest part of Kings, whose monuments sink into 
M oblivion in spite of the flatterers who reared, and who extol 


Paul. — " Ah ! I should covet this glory, only to diffuse it's 
" lustre over Virginia, and to render her dear to all the World. 
" But you, who have so much experience, tell me whether we 
a shall ever marry. I wish to be a scholar, at least to know 
" what I am to expect in future." 

Old Man. — " Who would wish to live, my son, if he knew 
•' what was to befal him hereafter? A single foreseen calamity 
" occasions a thousand vain anxieties : the certain prospect of a 
tl heavy affliction would embitter all the days which might pre- 
'* cede it. Indeed it is not proper to enquire too deeply even 
" into surrounding objects; Heaven, which bestows reflection 
" upon us that we may foresee our necessities, has also given us 
" necessities to set bounds to our reflection." 

Paul. — " You tell me that in Europe, dignities and honours 
" are to be purchased with money. I will go and acquire wealth 
" in Bengal, and then direct my course toward Paris and es- 
" pouse Virginia. I will go and embark immediately." 

Old Man, — " How ! will you leave her mother and your own ?" 

Paul. — " Why you yourself advised me to go to India." 

Old Man. — " When I gave you that advice Virginia was 
" here but at present you are the only support of your mo- 
" thers." 

Paul. — " Virginia will send them the means of subsistence 
** from the bounty of her rich relation," 

Old Man* — " Rich people assist those only who pay homage 
" to them in the W T orld. They have relations much more to be 
*' pitied than Madame de la Tour, and who for want of support 
" from them, sacrifice their liberty for the sake of bread, and 
" pass their lives shut up in a convent." 

Paid. — " What a dreadful country Europe is ! Oh ! Virginia 
" must return hither. What occasion has she for a rich rela- 
" tion ? How happy she once was under these lowly roofs, how 
'* beautiful and how charming, when her head was adorned with 
" a red handkerchief, or a wreath of flowers! O, Virginia! re- 
" turn, leave thy palaces and thy greatness ; return to these 
'* rocks, to the shade of these woods, and to our cocoa-trees. 

" Alas ! perhaps at this very moment thou art miserable." 

Saying this, he burst into tears. " Father," cried he, " conceal 
4 ' nothing from me ; if you are unable to tell me whether I shall 


" ever marry Virginia, inform me at least whether she stil! 
" loves me, though surrounded by great men who talk to the 
" King, and who visit herr" 

Old Man. — u Yes, my friend, I am convinced by many rea- 
" sons that she loves you, but principally by this, that she is vir- 
" tuous." At these words he clasped me round the neck, trans- 
ported with joy. 

Paul. — " But do you believe European women to be so incon- 
"*' stant as they are represented on the stage, and in those books 
' which you have lent me ?" 

Old Man — " In those countries where men tyrannize the wo- 
° men are always inconstant. Violence ever produces deceit." 

Paul. — u How is it possible for a man to exercise tyranny 
" over a woman ?" 

Old Man. — " By forcing women into a marriage without any 
" regard to their own inclinations ; a young girl to an old man, 
" a woman of feeling to a man of insensibility." 

Paul. — " Why do they not rather unite those together who 
11 are more suitable to each other ; the young with the young, 
" and lovers with those on whom their affections are fixed r" 

Old Man. — " The reason is, that in France the generality of 
" young men have not sufficient fortune to enable them to mar 
M ry, and that they seldom acquire a competency till they are ad 
*' vanced in years. In youth they seduce the wives of their neigh- 
" bours, and when old they are unable to secure the affections ol 
" their own wives. When young they deceived others, and when 
" old, are in their turn themselves deceived. It is one of the 
41 re-actions of that universal justice which governs the World : 
" one excess always balances another. Thus most Europeans 
" pass their lives in a twofold disorder, aud this disorder is in- 
" creased in a society proportionably as riches are accumulated 
" on a smaller number of individuals. The State resembles 
" a garden, in which small trees are unable to arrive at perfec- 
" tion if others too great overshadow them ; but there is this 
" manifest difference, that the beauty of a garden may result 
11 from a small number of large trees, but the prosperity of a 
" State ever depends on the multitude and ecmality of the sub- 
M jects, and not on a small number who monopolizes it's wealth." 

Paul. — u But why is want of money a hindrance to marriage V : 


Old Man. — " Because after a man has entered into that state, 
" he wishes to pass his days in abundance, without the necessity 
M of labouring." 

Paul. — " And why not labour ? I myself work very hard." 

Old Man. — " The reason is, that in Europe manual labour is 
•' deemed dishonourable; It is there called mechanical labour : 
'-' nay that of cultivating the ground is esteemed the most despi- 
u cable of all. There the artisan holds a far higher rank than the 
" peasant." 

Paid. — " How ! the art which supplies man with food despi- 
41 sed in Europe ! I do not understand you." 

Old Man. — " Oh! it is impossible for a man educated in a 
u state of Nature, to comprehend the depravity of a state of 
44 Society. Though such a one is able to form in his own mind 
u an exact idea of order, he cannot form one of disorder. Beau- 
44 ty, virtue and happiness have proportions : deformity vice and 
14 miserv have none." 

Paul. — " The rich then are very happy ; no obstacle lies in 
44 their way; and on the objects of their love they can bestow 
41 pleasures without end." 

Old Man. — " They are for the most part insensible to any 
41 pleasure because the attainment of it costs them no trouble. 
44 Does not experience teach you that the enjoyment of repose 
4C is purchased by fatigue ; that of eating, by hunger; that oi 
41 drinking, by thirst? In like manner, that of loving, and of be- 
44 ing beloved, is only to be obtained by a multitude of priva- 
44 tions and sacrifices. Their wealth deprives rich people of all 
44 these pleasures, by outrunning their necessities. Add, besides, 
4t to the disgust which always follows satiety, that pride which 
" springs from their opulence, and which the least privation 
44 wounds, even when the greatest enjoyments have ceased to 
44 flatter it. The perfume of a thousand roses only pleases for a 
44 single moment ; but the pain inflicted by one of their thorns 
44 lasts a long time after the wound is received.- To the rich, 
44 one misfortune in the midst of many enjoyments is a thorn 
44 surrounded by flowers ; but, on the contrary, to the poor, one 
44 pleasure in the middle of many calamities, is a flower sur- 
4t rounded on every side by thorns. They find a poignant relish 
44 in their enjoyments. Every eftect is heightened by it's con 



** trast ; Nature has balanced all things equally. Every thing 
'< considered then, Which state do you conceive to be preferable, 
" that of having almost nothing to hope for and all to fear, or 
" that of having nothing to fear and every thing to hope ? The 
" first of these states is that of the rich ; the second that of the 
" poor. These extremes however are equally difficult to be sup- 
" ported by man, whose happiness consists in mediocrity and 
" virtue." 

Paul. — " What do you understand by the word virtue ?" 
Old Man. — " My son, you who support your parents by the 
" labour of your hands have no occasion for a definition of it. 
" Virtue is an effort made upon ourselves, for the good of 
" others, in the view of pleasing GOD only." 

Paul. — " O, how virtuous then is Virginia ! Virtue was her 
** aim When she wished to become rich, that she might exercise 
u beneficence ; virtue made her leave this island, and virtue will 
•* restore her to us." The idea of her speedy return kindling 
the young man's imagination, all his disquietude vanished in an 
instant. Virginia had not written because she was on the point 
of returning: so little time was necessary to sail from Europe, 
with a fair wind. He enumerated instances of vessels which 
had made this voyage of more than four thousand five hundred 
leagues in less than three months. The vessel in which she had 
embarked would not take more than two. The builders of the 
present day were so skilful, and the mariners so alert. He talk- 
ed of the arrangements which he would make for her recep-» 
tion ; of the new habitation which he intended to build ; and of 
the pleasures and the agreeable surprize which he would contrive 

for her every day, when she became his wife ; his wife The 

idea ravished his senses. " As for you, father," said he to me, 
" you in future shall do nothing but enjoy yourself. Virginia 
" possesses wealth, and we can purchase plenty of Negroes, 
" who will work for you. You shall be with us always, and 
u nothing shall employ your mind but amusement and plea 
" sure." Immediately he flew like one distracted, to commu- 
nicate to his family the joy with which he himself was intoxi- 

Excessive fears soon succeeded the most sanguine hopes. 
Violent passions always plunge the soul into contrary extremes. 


Frequently on succeeding mornings Paul came to sec me, 
overwhelmed with grief. He said to me, " Virginia has 
44 not written to me : Had she left Europe she would cer- 
" tainly have informed us of it. Ah ! the reports which have 
k ' been circulated concerning her are but too well founded : 
44 her aunt has certainly married her to some nobleman. The 
" love of wealth has corrupted her, as is the case with so many 
44 others. In those books which so well describe the character 
** of the female sex, virtue is merely a subject for romance. Had 
44 Virginia really possessed virtue she would not have quitted 
" her own mother and me. While I pass my life, with my 
" thoughts entirely fixed on her, she has cast me from her re- 
" membrance. I am tormenting myself, and she is lost in dis- 
44 sipation. Ah ! that thought plunges me into despair. All 
44 labour disgusts me, and society becomes a burthen. Would 
44 to GOD that war would break out in India, I would hasten 
c< thither, and throw myself into the jaws of death." 

44 My son," replied I, " that courage which makes us rush on 
" to meet death, is the courage of only a single moment. It is 
■ ; often excited by the vain applause of man. There is a species 
44 of courage more rare, and still more necessary, which enables 
u us daily to support the misfortunes of life, without a witness, 
' 4 and without praise ; what I mean is patience. It rests not 
4 on the opinion of another, nor on the impulse of our own pas- 
* £ sions, but on the will of GOD. Patience is the courage of 
- 4 virtue." 

44 Ah then," cried he, 4t I have no virtue ! every thing over- 
44 whelms me and sinks mc into despair." 44 Virtue," replied* 
I, 44 always equal, constant, and invariable, is not the portion of 
-' Mankind. In the conflict of so many passions by which we 
14 are agitated, our reason is troubled and obscured ; but there 
-'- are pharoses by which we can rekindle the flame ; I mean 
•' Letters. 

44 Letters, my son, are an assistance sent to us from Heaven. 
44 They are rays of that wisdom which governs the Universe, 
!4 and which Man, inspired by a celestial art, has learned to es- 
vi tablish upon this Earth. Like the rays <rf the Sun, they en- 
" lighten, they comfort, they warm : it is a flame altogether di- 
'. Like fire, they direct all Nature to our use. By mean? 


" of them, we unite around us, men and things, times and places. 
" liy them we feci ourselves recalled to the rules of human 
" life. They calm the passions ; they repress vice ; they rouse 
" virtue by the sacred example of those great men whom they 
" celebrate, and whose honoured images they habitually pre- 
" sent to us crowned with respect. They are the daughters of 
" Heaven, who descend to Earth to soothe the misfortunes of 
" the Human Race. The great Writers whom they inspire, 
" have always appeared in times the most difficult for human 
" Society to subsist, the times of barbarism and of depravity. 
" My dear son, letters have afforded consolation to an infinite 
" number of men, far more miserable than you are ; Xenophon, 
" banished from his country after having brought back to it ten 
" thousand Greeks ; Scipio Afrkanus, exhausted with the re- 
" lentless calumny of the Roman people; Lucullus, sickened 
" with their cabals ; and Catinat, stung with the ingratitude of 
" a French Court. The ingenious Greeks assigned the several 
" governments of our various intellectual powers to the several 
" Muses, who preside over Letters : We ought therefore to 
" resign to them the government of our passions, that they 
" may direct and curb them. They ought, with regard to the 
" faculties of the soul, to perform the same functions, with the 
" Hours, which yoked and guided the horses of the Sun. 

" Apply yourself then, my son, to the study of books. Those 
" wise men who have written before us, are travellers who have 
" preceded us in the paths of calamity, who stretch out the 
" hand toward us, and invite us to join their society, when 
t* every body else has abandoned us. A good book is a good 
" friend. 

" Ah !" cried Paul, " I had no occasion to know how to read 
kL when Virginia was here : she had studied no more than I 
" had done, but when she looked upon me, calling me her friend, 
tc it was impossible for, me to know what sorrow meant." 

" Doubtless," said I to him, " there can be no friend so 
" agreeable as a mistress who loves reciprocally. There is be- 
M sides in woman a lively gaiety, which dissipates the pensive- 
" ness of man. He^ graces make the dark phantoms of re- 
" flection to fly away. On her countenance are depicted the 
1 gentle attraction of confidence. What joy is not heightened 

Voi. III. L 


" by her joy ? What forehead is not smoothed when she smiles ? 
" What wrath can repel her tears ? Virginia will return with 
" more philosophy than you possess ; She will be greatly sur- 
" prized at not finding the garden entirely restored, she, whose 
" thoughts are fixed on embellishing it, in spite of the perse- 
" cutions of her relation, while far from her mother, and far 
" from you." 

The idea of the approaching return of Virginia renovated 
the courage of Paid, and brought him back to his rural occupa- 
tions. Happy in the midst of his perturbation, in proposing to 
his exertions an end congenial to his predominant passion. 

One morning at day-break, it was the 24th of December, 
1752, Paul on rising perceived a white flag hung out on Mount 
Discovery t This flag was the signal that a vessel was descried 
at sea. He immediately flew to the city, to learn if it brought 
any intelligence of Virginia. He remained there till the return 
of the pilot of the port, who, according to custom, had gone out 
to reconnoitre her. This man did not come back till the even- 
ing. He reported to the Governor, that the vessel which they 
had hailed was the Saint-Gerard, of about seven hundred tons 
burthen, commanded by a captain named M. Aubin ; that she 
was four leagues distant at most, and that she could not come 
to her moorings off Port-Louis, till the next day in the after- 
noon, if the wind was fair. It was then a dead calm. The pi- 
lot then delivered to the Governor the letters which the vessel 
had brought from France. Among others there was one in 
Virginia's hand-writing for Madame de la Tour. Paul seized 
it immediately, and having kissed it with transport, he put it in 
.his bosom, and flew to the plantation. As soon as he could 
perceive the family from afar, who were waiting his return on 
Rock-Farewel,he raised the letter into the air, without the pow- 
er of uttering a syllable : immediately the whole family assem- 
bled round Madame dc la Tour to hear it read. 

Virginia informed her mother that she had experienced very 
harsh treatment from her grand-aunt, who had attempted to 
force her into marriage, had afterwards disinherited her, and 
then turned her away, at a time which w^ld not permit her to 
arrive at the Isle of France till the hurricane season : that she 
had to no purpose endeavoured to soften her, by representing 


what she owed to her mother, and to the connections of her 
early life ; that she had been treated by her as a girl whose head 
was turned with reading romances ; that at present her only 
wish was once more to see and embrace her dear family, and 
that she would have gratified this ardent wish that very day, if 
the captain would have allowed her to embark in the pilot-boat, 
but that he had opposed her departure, on account of the dis- 
tance of the shore, and of a heavy swell at sea in the offing, not- 
withstanding the stillness of the wind. 

No sooner was this letter read, than the whole family trans- 
ported with joy, cried out: " Virginia is arrived." Masters and 
servants embraced each other by turns. Madame de la Tour 
said to Paul : " My son, go and inform our neighbour of Vir- 
" ginia's arrival." Domingo immediately lighted a flambeau 
of round-wood, and then in company with Paul directed his 
course toward my habitation. 

It might be about ten o'clock at night : I had just extinguish- 
ed my lamp, and had lain down to sleep, when I perceived 
through the pallisades of my cottage a light in the woods. Soon 
after I heard the voice of Par //calling me by name. I immedi- 
ately arose, and was scarcely dressed, when Paul, almost dis- 
tracted and breathless, clasped me round the neck, saying : 
" Come, come along, Virginia is arrived. Let us hasten to 
'* the port, the vessel will anchor there by day-break." 

We immediately bent our course thitherward. As we were 
crossing the woods of the Long-Mountain, and already on the 
road which leads from Pamplemousses to the port, I heard the 
ourul of some one walking behind us. It was a negro hurry- 
ing on with his utmost speed. As soon as he had overtaken 
us, I asked him whence he came, and whither he was going 
with such expedition : He replied : " I come from that quar- 
" ter of the island which is called Gold-Dust, and am dispatch- 
" ed to inform the Governor, that a vessel from France has just 
a cast anchor under Amber Island. She is firing guns in token 
" of distress, for the sea is very boisterous." The man, having 
thus spoken, immediately hastened forwards. 

I then said to Paul: " Let us go toward Gold-Dust, to meet 
" Virginia; it is only three leagues from hence." We accord- 
directed our steps toward the northern part of the island. 


The heat was stifling : the moon had just arisen ; three black 
circles surrounded her. A frightful darkness overspread the 
whole face of Heaven. By the frequent flashes of lightning 
we discovered long streamers of thick clouds, gloomy and low- 
ering at no great height, piled one above another toward the 
middle of the island, which rushed from the sea with an amaz- 
ing rapidity, although on land not the least breath of wind was 
stirring. Hastening onwards, we thought we heard the roar- 
ing of thunder, but on listening more attentively we discovered 
it to be the report of cannon, reverberated by the echoes. The 
noise of the distant firing, joined to the tempestuous appearance 
of the Heavens, made me shudder. I had no doubt that it 
was a signal of distress from some vessel on the point of foun- 
dering. About half an hour afterwards the first ceased, and 
this silence struck me as much more awful than the mournful 
sounds which had preceded it. 

We quickened our pace without saying a word, not daring 
to communicate our uneasiness to each other. Toward mid- 
night we arrived in a violent heat on the sea-shore, at the quar- 
ter called Gold-Dust. The waves dashed themselves against it 
with a fearful noise. The foam, of a dazzling whiteness, and 
sparkling like fire, covered the rocks and shores. Notwith- 
standing the darkness, we could distinguish, by these phosphoric 
1 ghts, the canoes of the fishermen, which they had long before 
drawn a great way up on the strand. 

At some distance from thence, at the entrance of the wood, 
we descried a fire, round which several of the planters were as- 
sembled. We went thither to rest ourselves, and to wait for 
the return of day. Whilst we sat by the fire, one of the plant- 
ers told us, that the preceding afternoon he had seen a vessel at 
sea, borne toward the island by the currents ; that the shades of 
night had concealed her from his view, and that two hours after 
sun-set he had heard the firing of cannon, as a signal calling for 
assistance, but that the sea ran so high, no one could send out a 
boat to her relief: that soon after, he could perceive their lan- 
terns lighted up, and in that case he was afraid the vessel having 
oome so near the shore, might have passed between the main 
:and and the little Isle of Amber, mistaking the latter for Mire- 
Point, near which the vessels arriving at Port-Louis are accir- 


• d to pass; that if it were so, which however he could not 
,lutcly affirm, the vessel must be in the greatest danger. 
Vnother planter then spake, and told us that he had several 
times passed through the channel which separates the Isle of 
Amber from the coast ; that he had sounded it, and found that 
the mooring and anchoring ground were excellent ; and that the 
vessel would be as safe there as in the most secure harbour. " I 
" would risk my whole fortune in her," added he, u and could 
" sleep as soundly as if I were on dry land." A third person 
asserted that it was impossible for a vessel of that size to enter 
the channel, as even boats could with difficulty navigate it. He 
said that he had seen her anchor beyond the Isle of Amber, so 
that if the breeze sprung up in the morning, she would have it 
in her power either to put to sea again, or to gain the harbour. 
Other planters delivered various opinions. 

Whilst they were disputing among themselves, as is very cus- 
tomary with idle Creoles, Paul and I kept a profound silence. 
We remained there till peep of dawn, but then there was too 
little light in the Heavens to admit of our distinguishing any 
object at sea, which besides was covered with a thick fog; wc 
could only descry to windward a dusky cloud, which they told 
us was the Isle of Amber, situated at a quarter of a league's 
distance from the coast. We perceived no object by this gloo- 
my light but the point of land where we were, and the peaks of 
some of the mountains of the interior of the island, appearing 
from time to time in the midst of the clouds which iloated around 

About seven in the morning we heard the sound of drums in 
the woods ; it was the Governor, M. de la Bourdonaye, who 
came on horseback, attended by a detachment of soldiers armed 
with muskets, and by a great number of planters and negroes. 
He drew up the soldiers on the beach, and ordered them to fire 
a volley. Scarcely had they done so, when we perceived on the 
sea a flash ol light, almost immediately succeeded by the report 
of a cannon. We concluded that the vessel was at no great dis- 
tance from us, and we all flew to that quarter where we had seer 
Lgnal. We then discerned through the mist the hull and 
sail-yards of a larr, We were so close to her that not- 

ig of the sea, we distinctly heard the 


boatswain's whistle, and the voices of the sailors, who gave three 
cheers of Long live the King: for this is the exclamation of 
Frenchmen when in extreme danger, as well as amidst their 
greatest rejoicings ; as if they meant to call their Prince to their 
assistance in perilous seasons, or as if they intended even then 
to declare, that they were ready to meet death for his sake. 

From the moment that the Saint-Gerard perceived we were 
within reach of giving her assistance, she went on firing a gun 
every three minutes. M. de la Bourdonaye ordered large fires 
to be kindled here and there along the strand, and sent to all the 
inhabitants of the neighbourhood in quest of provisions, planks, 
cables, and empty casks. A multitude soon arrived, accompa- 
nied by their negroes, loaded with provisions and cordage, who 
came from the plantations of Gold-Dust, the quarter of the 
Marsh, and from Rampart River. One of the oldest of those 
planters approached the Governor, and thus addressed him: 
" Sir, deep sounds have all night long been heard in the moun-- 
" tain. In the woods the leaves are violently agitated, though 
" there is not a breath of wind stirring. The sea birds are flock- 
" ing in crowds to take refuge on the land ; surely all these signs 
" announce the approach of a hurricane." " Well, my friend,'' 
replied the Governor, " we are well prepared for it, and surely 
" the vessel is so likewise." 

In truth the whole appearance of Nature presaged an ap- 
proaching tempest. The clouds distinguishable in the zenith, 
were at their centre awfully black, and their edges of a copper 
colour. The air resounded with the screams of the paillencu, 
the frigat, the water-cutter, and a multitude of other fowls, 
which notwithstanding the gloom of the atmosphere flocked 
from all points of the horizon, to seek a shelter in the island. 

Toward nine o'clock in the morning, fearful noises were 
heard from the sea, as if torrents of water, mingled with the 
roaring thunder, were rushing from the mountain-tops. The 
whole company exclaimed : " There's the hurricane !" and at 
the same moment, an awful whirlwind carried off the fog which 
overspread the Isle of Amber and it's channel. The Saint-Ge- 
rard was then plainly descried, her deck crowded with people, 
her yards and round-tops lowered, her flag hoisted, four cables 
on her forecastle, and one to keep her fast a-stcrn. She had an- 


chored between the Isle of Amber and the main land, within 
the shelvy enclosure which surrounds the Isle of France, and 
which she had weathered through a channel that no vessel had 
ever passed before. She presented her bows to the billows, 
which rolled on from the main Ocean ; and at every surge which 
forced it's way into the channel, her prow was elevated to such 
a height that her keel was perceptible in the air ; but by this 
motion her stern, plunging downward, disappeared from view 
to it's very carved work, as if it had been entirely swallowed 
up. In this situation, in which the winds and the waves were 
driving her toward the shore, it was equally impossible to re- 
turn through the track by which she had entered, or by cutting 
her cables, to run a-ground upon the shore, from which she 
was separated by a deep bottom, sown thick with shelving 
rocks. Every billow which broke against the coast, rushed on 
roaring to the very bottom of the bay, and tossed the pebbles 
more than fifty feet up the shore ; then retiring backwards dis- 
covered a great part of it's bed, the stones of which were dash- 
ed backward and forward with a rough and horrible noise. The 
sea, swelled by the winds, increased every moment, and the 
whole channel between this island and the Isle of Amber, ap- 
peared to be an immense sheet of white foam, hollowed into 
deep and dusky waves. This foam collected itself at the bot- 
tom of the creeks to the height of more than six feet, and the 
winds, which brushed along it's surface, carried it beyond the 
steep cliffs of the shore more than half a league into the island. 
At sight of these innumerable white flakes, which were driven 
in a horizontal direction to the very foot of the mountains, you 
would have thought that hills of snow were rushing from the 
Sea. The horizon presented every symptom of a lengthened 
tempest : the Heavens and the Sea seemed to be confounded 
in it wilh each other. There were incessantly detached from 
it clouds of a fearful appearance, which flew along the zenith 
with the velocity of birds ; whilst others appeared in it immove- 
able like enormous rocks. Not a single spot of azure was per- 
ceptible in the whole firmament ; a pale and olive-coloured glare 
was all that illuminated the objects on the Earth, on the Sea. 
and in the Heavens. 


By the violent straining of the vessel, what we feared at length 
took place. The cables on her bows snapped ; and as she then 
rode by a single hawser, she was dashed upon the rocks half 
a cable's length from the shore. One scream of grief burst from 
every breast. Paul was hastening to throw himself into the sea, 
when I seized him by the arm. " My son," said I to him, 
" are you determined to destroy yourself i 1 " " Oh ! let me go 
" to her assistance," cried he, " or let me die !" As despair 
had overpowered his reason, Domingo and I, to prevent his 
destruction, tied round his middle a long cord, one of the ex- 
tremities of which we held fast. Paul then advanced toward the 
Saint-Gerard, sometimes swimming, sometimes walking on the 
shallows. Sometimes he had the hope of getting on board, for 
the sea, in these irregular movements, left the vessel nearly 
dry, so that you might almost walk round and round her : but 
presently returning with renovated fury, it covered her with 
enormous arches of water, which carried away the whole fore- 
part of her bottom, and dashed the unhappy Paul a great way 
up the shore, his legs bleeding, his chest bruised, and himself 
half-drowned. Scarcely had this young man recovered the use 
of his senses, when he got up again, and returned with redou- 
bled ardor toward the ship, which the sea meanwhile had torn 
asunder with unremitting attacks. Upon this, the whole crew, 
despairing of safety, threw themselves in crowds into the sea; 
some on masts, on planks, on hen-coops, on tables, and on 
casks. Then appeared an object worthy of eternal regret; a 
voung lady was seen on the stern-gallery of the Saint-Gerard, 
stretching out her arms toward him who was making so many 
fruitless efforts to join her. It was Virginia. She soon discov- 
ered her lover by his intrepidity. At sight of this amiable girl, 
exposed to perils so dreadful, we were overwhelmed with sor- 
row and despair. As for Virginia, with a noble and dignified 
air she waved her hand toward us, as if to bid us an eternal 
farewel. The sailors had all thrown themselves into the Ocean. 
One alone remained on the deck, who was entirely naked, and 
strong as a Hercules. He approached Virginia respectfully : we 
saw him throw himself at her knees, and even endeavour to 
persuade her to pull off her clothes ; but she, repelling him 
with dignity, turned her face the other way. The air resound- 



ed with these redoubled cries of the spectators : " Save her ! 
" oh, save her ! do not, do not quit her !" But at the same 
moment, a mountain of water of an enormous size, engulphed 
itself between the Isle of Amber and the coast, and advanced 
roaring toward the vessel, which it menaced with it's dusky 
sides and foaming summits. At this awful spectacle, the sailor 
flung himself alone into the sea, and Virginia perceiving death 
inevitable, placed one hand on her clothes, and the other on 
her heart ; then raising her placid eyes toward Heaven, she 
seemed an angel going to take flight toward the celestial re- 

Oh, day of horror ! Alas ! all was swallowed up. The surge 
dashed far up the shore a part of the spectators, whom an emo- 
tion of humanity had prompted to advance toward Virginia, as 
well as the sailor who had attempted to preserve her by swim- 
ming. This man, escaped from almost certain death, kneeled 
down upon the strand, saying : " Oh, my GOD, thou hast pre- 
" served my life ; but I would have sacrificed it willingly to 
" save that of the excellent young lady, who, with all my per- 
" suasion, would not be prevailed on to undress herself as I 
** did." Domingo and I drew out from the waves the unfortu- 
nate Paul, entirely deprived of recollection, whilst the blood 
gushed from his mouth and ears. The Governor put him 
under the care of surgeons, while he traversed the sea-shore 
to see whether the billows had not borne the body of Virginia 
thither ; but the wind having suddenly changed, as is very 
customary in the case of hurricanes, we had the mortification of 
reflecting that we should not have it in our power to render to 
this unfortunate young woman even the rites of sepulture. We 
hastened from the spot overwhelmed with sorrow, our minds 
entirely engrossed with the loss of one person, in a shipwreck 
where so many had perished^; the greater part doubting, from 
an end so disastrous befalling a young woman of such exalted 
virtue, whether a Providence existed at all ; for there are cala- 
mities so dreadful, and so unmerited, that the confidence even 
of the wisest is frequently staggered. 

Meanwhile they had placed Paul, who now began to recover 
the use of his senses, in an adjoining house, till his situation 
permitted him to be carried to his own home. As for me, I was 

Vol. III. M 


returning with Domingo, in order to prepare Virghiicfs mother, 
and her friend, for this calamitous event, when on our arrival 
at the entrance of the valley of the river of the Lataniers, some 
negroes informed us, that the sea was driving a great deal of 
the wreck of the vessel up the opposite bay. We descended 
thither, and one of the first objects which we descried upon the 
shore was the body of Virginia. It was half covered with sand, 
and in the very attitude in which we had seen her perish. 
There was no sensible alteration in her features. Her eyes 
were closed, but serenity sat upon her forehead ; only the pale 
violet of death blended itself upon her cheeks with the rose of 
modesty. One of her hands lay upon her clothes ; the other, 
which clung to her heart, was firmly closed and stiff. I disen- 
gaged from it, with much difficulty, a little casket; but how was 
I astonished when I perceived in it the portrait which Paul had 
given her, and which she had promised him never to part with 
whde she lived. At this last token of the constancy and the 
love of this unhappy maid, I wept bitterly. Domingo, beating 
his breast, pierced the air with his mournful cries. We then 
carried the body to a fisherman's hut, where we gave it in 
charge to some poor Malabar women, who washed it carefully. 
Whilst they were performing this sad office we ascended 
trembling toward the plantation. We there found Madame de 
la Tonr and Margaret at prayer, in expectation of news con- 
cerning the vessel. As soon as the former perceived me she 
exclaimed: " Where is my daughter? my beloved Virginia? 
" my child?" As my silence and my tears but too well inform- 
ed her of the calamity which had happened, she was suddenly 
seized with a suffocation and agonizing spasms ; her voice could 
be distinguished only in sighs and sobbiifc. Margaret exclaim- 
ed: "Where is my son ? I do not see m\ son;" and fainted 
away. We hastened to her, and having brought her to herself 
I assured her that Paul was alive, and that the Governor had 
taken proper care of him. She recovered the use of her senses 
only to devote her attention to the assistance of her friend, who 
from time to ime fell into long fainting fits. Madame de la 
Tour passed the night in these cruel paroxysms, and by the 
length of their duration JLhave judged that nothing equals the 
sorrow of a mother. When she recovered her reason, she fixed 



her mournful eyes steadfastly toward Heaven. In vain did 
Margaret and I press her hands between ours, in vain did we 
address her by the most tender appellations ; to all these testi- 
monies of our ancient affection she appeared totally insensible, 
and nothing but deep groans proceeded from her oppressed 

The next morning they brought Paul home, stretched along 
in a palanquin. Reason has resumed it's empire, but his voice 
was entirely lost. His interview with his mother and Madame 
de la Tour, which at first I had been apprehensive of, produced 
a better effect than all the care which I had hitherto taken. A 
ray of comfort beamed on the countenances of these two unhap- 
py mothers. They both approached him, clasped him in their 
arms, kissed him ; and those tears which had been till then re- 
strained through excess of sorrow, now began to flow. Paul 
soon mingled his with theirs. Nature being thus disburdened in 
these three unhappy beings, a languid oppression succeeded to 
the convulsions of their grief, and procured for them a lethargiG 
repose, which bore in truth a strong resemblance to death. 

Meanwhile M. de la Bourdonayc sent a messenger to me pri- 
vately, informing me that the body of Virginia had by his or- 
der been conveyed to the city, and that from thence he meant 
to have it carried to the church of Pamplemousses. I immedi- 
ately went down to Port-Louis, where I found the inhabitants 
assembled from all parts to assist at the funeral, as if the island 
had lost the most precious treasure which it contained. In the 
port, the ships had their sail-yards laid across, their flags half 
hoisted up, and they were firing minute guns. The grenadier 
company opened the funeral procession. They carried their 
arms inverted. Their drums, covered with long pieces of 
crape, emitted only sounds of woe: grief sat strongly depicted 
on the countenances of those warriors, who had a thousand 
times braved death in the field with undaunted courage. Eight 
young ladies of the most considerable rank in the island, cloth- 
ed in white, and holding palm-boughs in their hands, bore the 
body of their virtuous companion, strewed over with flowers. 
A choir of little children followed it chanting hymns: then af- 
the officers of higher rank, and the principal inhabl 


tants of the island, and last of all the Governor himself, follow- 
ed by a crowd of the common people. 

Thus far had Government interposed, in ordering that some 
honours might be rendered to the virtues of Virginia. But 
when the body had arrived at the foot of this mountain, at the 
sight of those very huts the happiness of which she had so long 
constituted, and which her death had filled with sorrow, the 
whole funeral ceremony was deranged; the hymns and the 
chanting ceased ; nothing was now to be heard in the plain but 
sighs and sobs. Crowds of young girls, belonging to the neigh- 
bouring plantations, hastened to spread over the coffin of Vir- 
ginia handkerchiefs, chaplets, and wreaths of flowers, invoking 
her as if she had been a saint. Mothers prayed Heaven to be- 
stow on them daughters like her ; the young men mistresses as 
constant ; the poor a friend as affectionate, and the slaves a mis- 
tress as kind. 

When they had arrived at the place destined for her inter- 
ment, the negresses of Madagascar, and the Cafres of Mosam- 
bique, placed baskets of fruit around her body, and suspended 
pieces of stuff on the neighbouring trees, according to the cus- 
tom of their country. The Indians of Bengal, and those of the 
coast of Malabar, brought cages of birds, which they set at li- 
berty over her corpse ; to such a degree does the loss of a be- 
loved object interest all Nations, and such a power does unfor- 
tunate virtue possess, seeing it attracts, and unites all religions 
around it's tomb. 

It was necessary to place a guard near her grave, to keep back 
some of the daughters of the poor inhabitants who were rushing 
to throw themselves into it, declaring that in this World their 
sorrow would admit of no consolation, and that nothing now re- 
mained for them but to die with her who had been their only 
benefactress. She was interred near the church of Pample- 
mousses, on it's western side, at the foot of a tuft of bamboos, 
where in going to mass with her mother and Margaret, she de- 
lighted to repose, seated by the side of him whom she then 
d to call brother. 

On returning from the funeral ceremony, M. de la Bourdo- 
nmje ascended this mountain, followed by a part of his nume- 


vous retinue. He tendered to Madame cle la Tour and her 
friend all the assistance in his power. He expressed himself 
in few words, but with great indignation, against her unnatural 
relation : approaching Paul, he said every thing which he thought 
could have a tendency to console him. " I was anxious to con- 
" tribute to your happiness, and that of your family," said he ; 
" Heaven is witness of my sincerity. My friend, you must go 
" to France ; I will procure your employment there. During 
" your absence I will take as much care of your mother as if 
" she were my own." At the same time he held out his hand 
to him ; but Paul drew back his, and turned his head aside that 
he might not see him. 

As for myself, I remained in the dwelling of my unfortu- 
nate friends, to administer to them, as well as to Paul, all the 
assistance I could. At the end of three weeks he was able to 
walk ; but mental depression seemed to increase in proportion 
as his body grew stronger. He was insensible to every thing ; 
his looks were languid, and he did not answer a syllable to all 
the questions which were put to him. Madame de la Tour, 
who was in a dying condition, frequently said to him : " My 
" son, so long as I see you, I think I behold my dear Virgi- 
" nut" At the name of Virginia he started up and hastened 
from her, in spite of the entreaties of his mother, who called 
him back to her friend. He wandered alone to the garden, and 
seated himself at the foot of Virginia's cocoa-tree, with his 
eyes steadfastly fixed on her fountain. The Governor's surgeon 
who had taken the greatest care of him and of the ladies, told us, 
that in order to remove the gloomy melancholy which had settled 
on his mind, we ought to allow him to do every thing that lit 
pleased, without contradicting him in any respect ; for this was 
the only means of vanquishing that silence which he so obsti- 
nately preserved. 

I resolved to follow his advice. As soon as Paul felt his 
ngth in some degree restored, the first use which he made £ 
of it was to retire from the plantation. As I did not wish to " 
lose sight of him, I walked behind, and desired Domingo to 
bring some provisions, and to accompany us. In proportion as 
the young man descended from this mountain, his joy and his 
strength seemed to revive. He at first bent his course toward- 


Pamplemousses, and when he had arrived at the church, in the 
bamboo-allev, he went directly to the spot where he saw the 
earth had been newly dug up : there he kneeled down, and rai- 
sing his eyes to Heaven offered up a long prayer. This action 
appeared to me a happy presage of returning reason, as this 
mark of confidence in the Supreme Being was a proof that his 
soul began to resume it's natural functions. Domingo and I 
fell down on our knees after his example, and prayed with him. 
At length he arose and walked to the northern part of the island, 
without paying much attention to us. As I knew that he was 
entirely ignorant, not only where the body of Virginia was de- 
posited, but also whether or not it had been saved from the 
Sea, I asked him why he had been praying to GOD at the 
foot of the bamboos : he replied : " We have been there toge- 
" ther so often !" 

He continued his journey to the entrance of the forest, where 
night overtook us. There I persuaded him by my example to 
take some nourishment ; we then reposed ourselves upon the 
grass at the foot of a tree. The next day I was in expectation 
that he would direct his steps homewards again. In truth, he 
fixed his eyes for some time from the plain, on the church of 
Pamplemousses, with it's long rows of bamboos, and made 
some movements to return thither ; but he suddenly buried him- 
self in the forest, always directing his course toward the North. 
I penetrated his intention, and in vain endeavoured to dissuade 
him from it. We arrived about mid-day at Gold-Dust. He 
hastily descended to the sea-shore, exactly opposite to the place 
where the Saint-Gerard had perished. At sight of the Isle of 
Amber and it's channel, then as smooth as a mirror, he ex- 
claimed : " Virginia I oh, my beloved Virginia /" and then fell 
down in a swoon. Domingo and I carried him to the interior 
of the forest, where we with much difficulty brought him to 
himself. When he had recovered his senses, he was preparing 
to return to the sea-shore ; but I entreated him not to renew his 
own grief and ours by such cruel recollections, and he took ano- 
ther road. In short, for eight days together he rambled to all 
those places which he was accustomed to frequent with the. 
companion of his infancy. He wandered along the path through 
which she had gone to ask pardon for the slave of the. Hlack 


River : he then visited the borders of the river of the Three 
Paps, where she sat down when unable to walk any farther, and 
that part of the wood in which she had been lost. Every place 
that recalled to his mind the inquietudes, the sports, the re- 
pasts, and the beneficence of his much-loved Virginia ; the ri- 
ver of the Long-Mountain, my little habitation, the neighbour- 
ing cascade, the papaya which she had planted, the mossy ground 
where she delighted to run, and the cross-paths of the forest 
where she loved to sing, each by turns caused his tears to flow : 
the very echoes which had so often repeated the sounds of their 
mutual joy, now resounded with nothing but these mournful 
cries : Virginia ! Oh, my beloved Virginia /" 

In this wild and wandering way of life, his eyes grew hollow, 
his colour faded, and his health gradually, but perceptibly, de- 
clined. Being firmly persuaded that the sentiment of our mis- 
fortunes is redoubled by the remembrance of the pleasures 
which we once enjoyed, and that solitude only gives an ed: 
the passions, I resolved to remove my unfortunate friend from 
the places which excited the recoiled ion of his loss, and to con- 
vey him to some part of the island where there were objects to 
dissipate his melancholy. For this purpose I conducted him to 
the inhabited heights of William's-quarter, where he had never 
been before. Agriculture and commerce then spread much 
bustle and variety over this island. There were many compa- 
nies of carpenters who squared the trees into logs, and others, 
who were sawing them into planks : carriages came and went 
along the roads : large flocks of oxen and horses fed in the ex- 
tensive pastures, and the fields were filled with habitations. The 
depth of the soil, in several places, admitted of the cultivation of 
many kinds of European vegetables. You might see here and 
there harvests of corn in the plain, beds of strawberries in the 
openings of the woods, and hedges of rose-trees along the highway. 
The coldness of the air, by giving tension to the nerves, was even 
favourable to the health of the whites. From these heights, 
situated in the middle of the island, and surrounded with thick 
woods, you can discover neither the Sea, nor Port-Louis, nor 
the church of Pamplemousses, nor any thing which could recal 
\ntTs mind the remembrance of Virginia. The very moan- 


tains, which present different branches on the side of Port-Louis, 
offer nothing to view on the side of William's-Plain but a long 
promontory, in a straight and perpendicular line, out of which 
many lofty pyramids of rocks elevate themselves, and collect 
the clouds around their peaks. 

It was to these plains accordingly that I conducted Paul. I 
kept him continually in action, walking with him in sun-shine 
and in rain, by day and by night, leading him into the woods, 
and over the fresh ploughed ground and the fields, in order to 
amuse his mind by the fatigue of his body; and to deceive his 
reflections by ignorance of the place where we were, and of the 
road which we had left. But the mind of a lover finds every 
where traces of the beloved object. The night and the day, the 
calm of solitude and the noise of habitation, nay time itself, 
which erases so many recollections, brought no relief to his 
mind. Like the needle touched by the magnet, which is to no 
purpose agitated, for as soon as it recovers a state of rest, it 
points to the Pole which attracts it : so when I asked Paul, as 
we wandered about in William's-Plain, " Whither shall wc go 
now ?" he turned toward the North, and said : " These arc our 
" mountains, let us return thither." 

I clearly perceived, that all the methods by which I had en- 
deavoured to divert his mind, were ineffectual, and that the 
only resource now left was to attack the passion in itself, by 
employing to this purpose the whole strength of my feeble rea- 
son. I accordingly replied : " Yes, these are the mountains 
u where you beloved Virginia once lived, antl there is the por- 
" trait which you gave her, and which in death she pressed to 
" her heart, the last emotions of which were devoted to thee." 
I then presented to Paul the little portrait which he had given 
Virginia on the banks of the fountain of the cocoa-trees. At 
sight of this a gloomy joy overspread his countenance. He 
eagerly seized the portrait with his feeble hands, and pressed 
it to his lips. Immediately his breast became oppressed and to 
his blood shot-eyes the tears started, but were unable to flow. 

I said to him : " My son, attend to the words of one who is 
" your friend, who was so to Virginia, and who, in the ardor of 
" your expectations, has frequently endeavoured to fortify your 
" reason against the unforeseen calamities of human life- 



" What is it you deplore with so much bitterness of soul ? Is it 
" the misfortune which has befallen yourself.' Is it that which 
" has befallen Virginia ?" 

" The misfortune which has befallen yourself — yes, I grant 
" you it has been very severe. You have lost the most amiable 
" of young women, who would have made the most virtuous of 
u wives, she had sacrificed her own interests to your's, and pre- 
" ferred you to fortune, as the only recompense worthy of her 
" virtue. But how do you know whether the object, from 
" whom you expected happiness so pure, might not have prov- 
** ed to you the source of sorrows innumerable ? She was dow- 
" erless and disinherited. You would have nothing in future 
" to share with her, but what the labour of your hands produ- 
" ced. Rendered more delicate by her education, and more 
" couragious by her very misfortunes, ou would have seen her 
" daily sinking under the weight of the fatigues which she cx- 
" erted herself to divide with you. In the event of bringing 
" you children, her troubles and your own would have 
" greatly increased, by the difficulty of supporting with you 
" alone, your aged parents, and a growing family. 

" You may tell me the Governor would have assisted us : but 
" how do you know whether, in a colony which so often changes 
" it's rulers, you would have always found such men as M. clc 
" la Bourdonaye ? Whether some Governor might not have 
" been sent hither, unpolished and unprincipled \ Or whether 
" your wife, to obtain some miserable pittance, might not have 
" been obliged to cringe to such a man ? Either she would have 
" become frail, and you would have been an object of pity, or 
u she would have maintained her honour, and you must have 
" remained under the pressure of poverty : happy if, on account 
lt of her beauty and virtue, you had not been persecuted by those 
" very persons from whom you solicited protection. 

" You may say, I might have enjoyed happiness independent 
• l of fortune, by protecting the beloved object who was attached 
M to me, in proportion to her very weakness ; by consoling her 
' with my own inquietudes," by making her rejoice even in my 
" dejection, and thus causing our love to increase by our mu- 
" tual sorrows. Doubtless virtue and love do delight in these 
u bitter pleas; it she is now no more ; 1 remains 

Vol. III. X 


" to vou however what next to yourself she loved most, namely 
" her own mother and your's, whom by your inconsolable afflic- 
" tion, you are bringing down to the grave. Make it your hap- 
" piness to succour them, as it was her's. My son, beneficence 
" is the happiness of virtue ; there is none greater or more cer- 
11 tain on the Earth. Projects of pleasures, of repose, of enjoy- 
" ments, of abundance, and of glory, are not made for feeble 
" Man, who is only a traveller and a passenger through this 
" World. Behold how a single step toward fortune has preci- 
" pitated us from one abyss into another? You opposed it, I 
" grant ; but who of us did not believe, that the voyage of Vir- 
" i;inia would terminate in her own happiness and in your's ? 
" The invitations of a rich and old relation; the advice of a 
" sensible Governor; the approbation of a whole colony; the 
" exhortations and the authority of an ecclesiastic, have all con- 
" curred in deciding the fate of Virginia. Thus we rush on to 
" our own destruction, deceived by the very prudence of those 
" who govern us. It would doubtless have been better had we 
" not believed them, nor trusted to the opinions and the ex- 
" pectations of a deceitfitr World. But after all, of so many 
" men whom we see thus busily employed in these plains ; of 
" so many others who go in quest of fortune to the Indies, or 
" who, without leaving their own homes, enjoy at their ease in 
" Europe the fruit of the labours of the people here, there is 
" not so much as one but who is destined to lose, some day, that 
a which he holds most dear ; greatness, fortune, wife, children, 
" friends. Most of them have superadded to their loss the re- 
" flection of their own imprudence. But as for you, when you 
" retire within yourself, you find nothing to reproach yourself 
" with. You have maintained unshaken fidelity ; in the flower 
iC of youth you have possessed the prudence of a sage in not 
" departing from the sentiment of Nature. Your views alone 
" were perfectly legitimate, because they were pure, simple and 
" disinterested, and because you had sacred rights over Vir- 
" ginicty which no fortune could compensate. You have lost 
" her, but it is not your imprudence, nor your avarice, nor your 
" false wisdom, which occasioned that loss; it is GOD himself, 
" who has employed the passions of another to deprive you of 
" the object of your love j that GOD from whom you receive 


" every thing, who sees what is proper for you, and whose wis- 
" dom has not left you in any place for the repentance and des- 
" pair which ever follow in the train of those evils which we 
" have brought upon ourselves. 

" This is what you can say to yourself, under the pressure of 
" your affliction : I have not merited it. Is it then the misfor- 
" tune which hath befallen Virginia, her end, her present con- 
" dition, that you deplore ? She has submitted to the decision 
" reserved for birth, for beauty, and even for empires them- 
" selves. The life of Man, with all it's projects, rears itself 
" like a little tower, to which death applies the finishing stroke. 
" The moment she was born she was condemned to die. Hap- 
" py in having resigned her life before her mother, before 
u your's, and before yourself; that is, in not having suffered 
u many deaths before the final one. 

" Death, my son, is a blessing to all Mankind. It is the 
" evening of that restless day which we call life. It is in the 
" sleep of death that the diseases, the griefs, the vexations, and 
" the fears, which incessantly agitate unhappy mortals, repose 
" for ever. 

" Examine those men who appear the most happy, and you 
" will find that they have purchased their pretended enjoyments- 
" very dearly ; public respectability by domestic distresses ; 
u fortune by the loss of health ; the real pleasure of being be- 
" loved by continual sacrifices ; and, often, at the close of a life 
" devoted to the interests of another, they see nothing around 
" them but false friends, and ungrateful relations. But Virgi- 
" nia was happy to the last moment of her's. She was so 
" whilst among us, by those blessings which Nature bestows ; 
" at a distance from us by those of virtue : even in that dread- 
" lul moment when we saw her perish, she was still happy; for 
u whether she cast her eyes on a colony in which she was going 
" to cause universal desolation, or upon you, who rushed with 
" such intrepidity to her assistance, she clearly perceived how 
ir she was to us all. S' e was prepared to meet the future, 
" by reflecting on the innocence of her past life, and she then 
" received the reward which Heaven reserves for virtue, a 
" courage superior to danger. She encountered death with a 
" serene countenance. 


" My son, the Almighty has decreed to virtue the power of 
a supporting all the events of human life, to let us see that it 
" alone can make the proper use of them, and find in them fe- 
" licity and glory. When He reserves for it an illustrious re- 
" putation, he elevates it on a great theatre, and sets it a con- 
" flicting with death : then it's courage serves as an example, 
" and the remembrance of it's misfortunes receives a tribute of 
" tears from posterity which lasts for ever. This is the immor- 
" tal monument reserved for it, upon a globe where every thing 
" passes away, and where even the memory of the generality 
" of Kings is speedily buried in everlasting oblivion. 

** But Virginia exists still. Observe, my son, how every thing 
" on the Earth changes, and yet that nothing is lost : no hu- 
" man skill can annihilate the smallest particle of matter ; and 
" could that which was rational, sensible, susceptible of love, 
" virtuous, religious, have perished, when the elements with 
" which it was invested are not liable to destruction : Ah ! if 
" Virginia enjoyed happiness once in our society, how much 
'« more does she enjoy /now ! There is a GOD, my son; all Na- 
" ture announces it ; there is no occasion to prove it to you. 
" Nothing but the wickedness of men could make them deny 
" a justice which they contemplate with terror. A sentiment of 
" Him is in your heart, just as his works are before your eyes. 
" Can vou believe then that He will leave Virginia without a 
li recompense ? Can you believe that the same Power which 
" clothed a soul so noble, in a form so beautiful, in which such 
" divine skill was clearly perceptible, was not able to have sav- 
* c ed her from the waves i that He, who lias arranged the ac- 
" tual happiness of Man by laws of which you are entirely ig- 
" norant, could not prepare another for Virginia, by laws equal- 
" ly unknown to you ? Before we were created, if we had pos- 
" sessed the faculty of thinking, could we have formed any idea 
" of our future being ? And now that we are in this dark and 
" fugitive existence, can we foresee what is beyond death, 
" through which we must make our transition from it ? Has 
" the Almighty occasion, like Man, for this little globe of Earth, 
" to serve as the theatre of his wisdom and goodness, and is he 
" capable of propagating human life only in the plains of death ? 
" There is not a single drop of water in the Ocean but what is 


" filled with living creatures, which have all a reference to us ; 
" and does nothing exist for us among all those stars which 
" revolve over our heads ! What, is there no supreme Intelli- 
" gence and divine Goodness in any spot but precisely that 
«.* where we are ; and in those radiant and innumerable globes, 
" in those vast plains of light which surround them, and which 
" are never obscured by darkness or tempest, do you believe 
" there is nothing but empty space, and an eternal non-exis- 
" tence ! If we, who could give nothing to ourselves, durst set 
" bounds to that Power from whom we have received every 
u thing, we might believe ourselves to be stationed here upon 
" the limits of his empire, where life is ever struggling with 
" death, and innocence with tyranny. 

" Without doubt there is somewhere a place in which vir- 
" tue receives it's reward. Virginia now is happy. Ah ! if 
" from the abode of angels she could communicate to you her 
** thoughts, she would say, as she did in her last farewel : Oh, 
" Paul, life is only a state of probation. I have been found 
*' faithful to the laws of Nature, of love, and of virtue. I cros- 
" sed the seas. in obedience to my relations ; I renounced riches 
" to preserve my fidelity ; and I have preferred death to the 
" violation of modesty. Heaven has decreed that the career of 
" my earthly existence has been sufficiently filled up. I have 
" for ever made escape from poverty, from calumny, from tern- 
" pests, and from the painful spectacle of the woes of others. 
" None of those ills which terrify Mankind can ever in future 
'* affect me ; and yet you still pity me ! I am pure, and unsus- 
" ceptible of change, as a particle of light ; and you wish to 
" recal me to the gloomy night of life ! Oh, Paul! Oh, my 
" friend ! call to mind those days of happiness, when in the 
M morning we enjoyed the beauty of the Heavens, rising with 
" the Sun on the peaks of these rocks, and diffusing itself with 
** it's radiations over the bosom of our forests. We experienced 
" a felicity the cause of which we were unable to comprehend. 
M In our innocent desires, we wished to be all eye, in order to 
" enjoy the rich colours of Aurora ; all smell, to inhale the 
" perfume of our flowers ; all ear, to listen to the warbling of 
" our birds ; all gratitude, to acknowledge these blessing 


" Now at the source of beauty, whence flows all that is delight- 
" ful on the Earth, my soul immediately tastes, hears, touches, 
" what it could then perceive only through feeble organs. Ah ! 
" w r hat language is capable of describing these regions of an 
" eternal morning which I inhabit for ever. Every thing that 
" Omnipotence and celestial Goodness could create, in order to 
" administer consolation to an unfortunate being ; all the har- 
" mony which the friendship of an infinite number of beings 
" partaking of the same felicity, mingles in our common trans- 
" ports, I now experience without alloy. Support thyself then 
" in thy state of probation, that thou mayest increase the hap- 
" piness of thy Virginia, by a love which knows no bounds, 
" and by a marriage the torches of which can never be extin- 
" guished. There, I will calm thy sorrows ; there, I will wipe 
" away thy tears. Oh, my friend ! my young husband ! ele- 
" vate thy soul toward infinity, in order to support the mise- 
" vies of a moment." 

My own emotion entirely stifled my voice. As for Paul, 
regarding me stedfastly he exclaimed : " She is no more ! she 
" is no more !" A long languid oppression succeeded these 
mournful words ; then, returning to himself, he said : " Since 
" death is a blessing, and Virginia is happy, I will die also that 
" I may again be united to her." Thus the consolation which 
I endeavoured to administer, only served to aggravate his des- 
pair. I was like a person who wishes to save his friend when 
sinking to the bottom of a river, without his making any effort 
to swim. Sorrow had entirely overwhelmed hhn. Alas ! the 
misfortunes of our early age prepare man for entering into *ife, 
and Paul had never experienced them. 

I conducted him back to his habitation, and I there found his 
mother and Madame de la Tour in a very languishing state,, 
which had greatly increased since I left them. Margaret was 
the most broken down. Lively characters, over whom slight 
troubles slide easily away, are the least able to withstand heavy 

She said to me : " Oh, my kind neighbour ! I dreamt to- 

w night that I saw Virginia, clothed in white, in the midst of 

«rers and delicious gardens. She said to me : I enjoy a 


11 felicity greatly to be envied. Then she approached Paul with 
" a joyful air, and carried him away with her. As I was en- 
" deavouring to retain my son, I felt as if I was quitting the 
" Earth myself, and that I followed him with a pleasure inex- 
" pressible. Upon that I wished to bid farewel to my friend, 
" but I perceived her coming a ft cr us> accompanied by Mary 
" and Domingo. But what is still more singular, Madame etc 
" la Tour has had this very night a dream attended with exact- 
" ly similar circumstances." 

I replied : " My friend, I believe that nothing happens in 
" the World without the permission of GOD. Dreams some- 
" times announce truth." 

Madame de la Tour related to me a dream entirely resem- 
bling this, which she had that same night. I never observed 
that these two ladies were in the least inclined to superstition. 
I was therefore struck with the coincidence of their dreams, 
and I had not the least doubj in my own mind that they would 
soon be realized. The opinion, that truth is sometimes convey- 
ed to us in sleep, is universally propagated over all the Nations 
of the Earth. The greatest men of antiquity have adopted it ; 
among others, Alexander, Cesar, the Scifrios, the two Catos, and 
Brutus, who were none of them men of weak minds. The Old 
and New Testament have furnished us with many instances of 
dreams which were verified. For my own part, I have no oc- 
casion for any higher proof on the subject than my own expe- 
rience ; and I have found, oftener than once, that dreams are 
sometimes warnings, which give us information very interest- 
ing to ourselves. But if any person shall pretend to attack or 
defend by argument, things which transcend the powers of hu- 
man understanding, he undertakes an impossibility. ^However, 
.if the reason of Man is only an image of that of the Almighty; 
since Man is capable of conveying his thoughts to the extremi- 
ties of the World by secret and concealed means, why should 
not that Intelligence which governs the World, employ similar 
methods of accomplishing the same purpose ? One friend con- 
soles another by a letter, which travels through a multitude ol 
kingdoms, which circulates amidst the hatred of Nations, and 
communicates joy and hope to one single individual ; Whv 


mav not the Sovereign Protector of innocence come, by some 
secret means, to the relief of a virtuous soul which reposes con- 
fidence in him alone ? Has he occasion to employ any exterior 
sign to execute his will; He who acts continually in all his 
works by an internal impulse ? 

Wherefore doubt of the intimations given in dreams ? Life, 
filled with so many vain and transitory projects, what is it but a 

dream ! 

However that may be, those of my unfortunate friends were 
soon realized. Paul died two months after his beloved Virginia, 
whose name he incessantly repeated. Margaret expired eight 
days after her son, with a joy which it is bestowed only on vir- 
tue to taste. She took the most tender farewel of Madame dc 
la Tour, " in the hope," said she, " of a sweet and eternal re- 
" union. Death is the greatest of blessings," added she, " it is 
" highly desirable. If life be a punishment we ought to wish 
" for it's termination ; if it be a state of probation, we ought to 
" wish it shortened." 

Government took care of Domingo and Mary, who were no 
longer in a condition for service, and who did not long survive 
their mistress. As for poor Fidele, he drooped to death near- 
ly about the same time with his master. 

I conducted Madame de la Tour to my habitation ; she sup- 
ported^ herself, in the midst of losses so terrible, with a great- 
ness of soul altogether incredible. She administered consolation 
to Paid and Margaret to the very last moment, as if she had no 
distress but theirs to support. When they wcr£ no more, she 
spake to me of them every day, as if they had been beloved 
friends still in the neighbourhood. She survived them however 
only a month. With regard to her aunt, far from reproaching 
her with these misfortunes, she prayed GOD to forgive her, 
and to appease the dreadful horrors of mind with which, we 
heard, she had been seized immediately after she had dismissed 
Virginia with so much barbarity. 

This unnatural relation soon met with the punishment due to 

her cruelty. I heard, by the successive arrival of several ves- 

. that she was tormented by the vapours, which rendered 

• qually insupport; "eproached 




herself with the premature death of her grand-niece, and that of 
her mother which soon followed it. At other times she applaud- 
ed herself for having discarded two unhappy wretches who had 
disgraced her family by the meanness of their inclinations. 
Frequently flying into a passion at sight of the great number of 
miserable people, with which Paris is filled, she exclaimed : 
" Why do they not send these idle wretches to perish in our 
" Colonies ?" She added, that the ideas of virtue, of humanity, 
and of religion, adopted by all Nations, were nothing but the 
political inventions of their Princes. Then, suddenly plunging 
into the opposite extreme, she abandoned herself to superstitious 
terrors, which filled her with mortal apprehensions. She ran 
about, carrying with her vast sums, which she bestowed on the 
rich monks who were her ghostly directors, and entreated them 
to appease the Deity by the sacrifice of her fortune ; as if that 
wealth, which she had denied to the miserable, could be accept- 
able to the Father of Mankind ! Her imagination was frequently 
haunted by deluges of fire, burning mountains, or hideous spec- 
tres wandering before her, and calling her by name, with hor- 
rible screams. She threw herself at the feet of her directors, 
and formed, in her own mind, the tortures and punishments 
which were preparing for her ; for Heaven, just Heaven, sends 
fearful visions to harrow up the souls of the unmerciful. . 

Thus she passed several years, by turns an atheist anfel a de- 
votee, equally in horror of life and death. But what terminated 
an existence so deplorable was the very thing to which, she had 
sacrificed the sentiments of Nature. She had the mortification 
fleet, that her riches would, after her death, descend to 
relations whom she hated. In order to prevent this she endea- 
voured to alienate the greatest part of her fortune ; but they* 
availing themselves of the frequent paroxysms of spleen to which 
she was subject, had her shut up as a lunatic, and her estates were 
put in trust for her heirs. Thus her very riches put the finish- 
ing stroke to her destruction ; and as they had hardened the 
heart ol her who possessed them, so they, in like manner, ex- 
lished natural affection in the br 10 coveted 

n. She accordingly died; ano^ililht filled up the measure 
of her wo, with so mur.Tlmse of her 1 to know 

»L. III. ^C) 


she had bsen plundered and despised by those very persons 
whose opinion had directed her all her life long. 

JRv the side of Virginia, and at -the foot of the same bamboos, 
her friend Paul was laid ; around them, their tender mothers 
and thtir faithful servants. No marble raises itself over their 
humble graves ; no engraved inscriptions, recording their vir- 
tues : but their memory will never be effaced from the hearts 
of thdSe whom they had laid under obligations to them. Their 
shades have no need of that lustre which they shunned all their 
life-time; but if they still interest themselves in what is passing 
on the Earth, they doubtless take delight in wandering under 
the straw covered roofs, where industrious virtue resides; in 
consoling poverty discontented with it's lot ; in encouraging 
m youthful lovers a lasting flame, a relish for the blessings of 
Nature, a love of labour, and a dread of riches. 

The voice of the people, which is silent respecting the monu- 
ments reared to the glory of Kings, has bestowed on several 
parts of this island names which still eternalize the loss of Vir- 
ginia. You may see, near the isle of Amber, in the middle of 
helves, a place called The Saint-Gerard's Pass, from 
the name of the vessel which perished there in returning from 
Europe* The extremity of that long point of land, which you 
bout three leagues from hence, half covered with the waves 
of th< the Saint-Gerard could not double the even- 

ing of the hurricane, in order to make the harbour, is named 
^^^ IV^sfortune ; there, just bciore you, at the bottom of 
, is Tojib-B ay, where the body of Virginia was found 
^PPlcd in the sand, as if the Sea had intended to bear her back 
and to render the last duties to her modesty, 
upon shores which she had honoured with her inno- 

Young people so tenderly united! Unfortunate mothers! 

Deav'y beloved family ! These woods which gave vou shade, 

is which flowed for^you, those rocks upon which 

d together, still lament your loss. No one after you 

I to cultivate this desolate spot, nor rear again these 

humble cottages. YourgorJs have" become wild; your orchards 

fioWn away; nothing is now to 


be heard but the cries of the hawk, flying around the top of 
this bason of rocks. For my part, since I behold you no lon- 
ger, I am like a friend stripped of his friends, like a father who 
has lost his children, like a traveller wandering through the 
Earth, where I remain in gloomy solitude. 

As he uttered these words, the good old man walked away, 
melting into tears, and mine had flowed more than once du- 
ring this melancholy relation. 



AS there are Notes of considerable length to the two follow- 
ing Fragments, I have thought it advisable to transfer them to 
the end of their respective articles. The use of Notes, so 
common in modern Books, arises, on the one hand, from the 
unskilfulness of Authors, who feel themselves at a loss how to 
introduce into their Works observations which they conceive 
to be interesting ; and on the other, from the excessive delica- 
cy of Readers, who do not like to have their progress inter- 
rupted by digressions. 

The Ancients, who wrote much better than we do, never sub- 
joined Notes to their text ; but they stepped aside from it, to 
the right and to the left, according as occasion required. In 
this manner wrote the most celebrated Philosophers and His- 
torians of Antiquity, such as Herodotus, Plato, Xenophon, Taci- 
tus, the good Plutarch Their digressions, if I may be per- 
mitted to judge, diffuse a very pleasing variety over thcir 
Works. They shew you a great deal of the country in a little 
time ; and conduct you by the lakes, over the mountains, 
through the forests ; but never fail to lead you to the mark, 
and that is no easy matter. This mode of travelling hov, 
does not suit the Authors, nor the Readers, of our times, who 
are disposed to find their way only through the plains. To save 
others, and especially myself, some part of the intricacies of 
the, road, I have composed Notes, and separated them from die 


Text. This arrangement presents a farther accommodation to 
the Reader ; he will be spared the trouble of perusing the Notes 
if he grows tired of the Text.* 

* I have taken the liberty, in this Edition, to insert the notes on the cor- 
responding pages of the text, to save the Reader the trouble of turning from 
one part of the book to another; but such is the veneration I have for my 
Author, that I could not think of suppressing even the above short notice, 
as it stands.— H. H. 




AS soon as they perceived that after an experi- 
ence of Mankind so vexatious my heart panted only for a life 
of solitude ; that I had embraced principles from which I could 
not depart ; that my opinions respecting Nature were contrary 
to their systems ; that I was not a person disposed to be either 
their puffer, or to court their protection ; and that, in a word, 
they had embroiled me with my patron, whom they frequently 
abused to me in the view of alienating me from him, and to 
whom they assiduously paid their court ; they then became my 
enemies. A great many vices are imputed to the Great; but 
I have always found many more in the Little who study to 
please them. 

These last were too cunning to attack me openly with a Per- 
sonage to whom I had given, in the very height of my misfor- 
tunes, proofs of a friendship so disinterested. On the contrary., 
in presence of that gentleman, as well as before myself, they 
passed high encomiums on my principles, and on some very 
simple acts of moderation which had resulted from them ; but 
the\- employed terms so artfully exaggerated, and appeared so 
sy about the opinion which the World would entertain of 
the matter, that it was easy to discern their great object was to 
induce me to renounce it, and that they commended my pa- 
tience so extravagantly only to make me lose it. Thus the\ 
calumniated me under the guise of panegyric, and destroyed 


my reputation in feigning to pity me ; like those sorceresses of 
Thessaly, mentioned by Pliny, who blasted the harvests, the 
flocks, and the husbandmen, by speaking good of them. 

I separated myself therefore from those artful men, who con- 
tinued to justify themselves at my expense, in representing me 
as a person of a mistrustful disposition, after having abused my 
confidence in so many different ways. 

Not but that I consider myself as reprehensible for a sen- 
sibility, too acute, to pain, whether physical or moral. A sin- 
gle prickle gives me more uneasiness than the smell of a hun- 
dred roses gives pleasure. The best company in the World ap- 
pears to me intolerable, if I meet in it a single self-important, 
envious, evil-speaking, malignant, perfidious person. I am well 
aware that people of very great worth associate every day with 
persons of all these descriptions, support them, nay flatter them, 
and turn them to their own account ; but I am well aware at the 
same time that these same people of worth bring into Society 
nothing but the jargon of the World; whereas I, for my part, 
always pour out my heart ; that they pay deceivers in their own 
coin, and I with all I have, that is to say with my sentiments. 
Though my enemies may represent me as of a mistrustful cha- 
racter, the greatest part of the errors of my life, especially as far 
as they are concerned, arose from an excess of confidence ; and 
after all I would much rather have them complain that I mis- 
trusted them without a cause, than that they should have had 
themselves any reason to be mistrustful of me. 

I endeavoured to make friends of the men of an opposite par- 
ty, who had expressed an ardent inclination to attract me thi- 
ther, before I joined it, but who, the moment I came over, no 
longer put any value on my pretended merit. When they per- 
ceived that I did not adopt all their prejudices ; that I aimed at 
nothing but the discovery of truth ; that, disposed to malign 
neither their enemies nor my own, I was not a fit person to be 
employed in cabal and intrigue ; that my feeble virtues, which 
they once so highly extolled, had procured me nothing lucrative; 
and that they were incapable of doing harm to any one ; in a 
I, that I no more belonged to their side than to that of their 
antagonists ; they neglected me entirelv, and even persecuted 
ir turn. Thus T found by experience that in a seifieh 


and corrupted age, our friends measure their consideration of us 
only by that which their own enemies entertain respecting us, 
and that they court us just in proportion as we can be useful, or 
render ourselves formidable to them. I have every where seen 
confederacies of various sorts, and I have always found in them 
the same species of men. They march it, is true under stan- 
dards of different colours ; but they are always those of ambi- 
tion. They have but one and the same object in view, namely 
to domineer. Nevertheless, the interest of their corps except- 
ed, I never met with two of them whose opinions did not differ 
as much as their faces. What is a source of joy to the one sinks 
the other into despair : to the one, evidence appears to be ab- 
surdity ; to the other, downright absurdity is evidence. What 
do I say ? In the exact study which I have made of men, in the 
view of finding a comforter among them, I have seen persons 
the most renowned differ completely from themselves, accord- 
ing as it was morning or night, as it was before or after dinner, 
as they were in public or in private. Books, even those which 
are most eagerly cried up, abound with contradictions. Thus 
I was made sensible, that the diseases of the mind were no less 
reduced to systematic methods of cure than those of the body, 
and that I had acted very imprudently, in adding the unskil- 
fulness of the physicians to my own infirmities, as there are 
more patients of every description, killed by remedies than by 

While all this was going on, my calamities had not vet at- 
tained their final period. The ingratitude of men, of whom I 
had deserved better things ; unexp, aily mortifications j 

the total annihilation of my slender patrimony, scattered abroad 
to the four winds of Heaven in enterprises undertaken for the 
service of my Country ; the debts under which I lay oppr< 

by engagements of this kind; all my hopes of fort u d 

these combined calamities made dreadful inroads at once upon 
my health and my reason. I was attacked by a malady to 
which I had hitherto been a stranger. Fires, similar to those 
of lightning, affected the organs of ry object pre- 

sented itself to me double, and in motioTu ! I saw 

two Suns. My heart was not less disturbed than my head. In 
the finest, day of Summer, I could not cross the St boat, 

Vo P 


without undergoing anxieties unutterable; even I, who had 
preserved my soul in tranquillity amidst a tempest off" the Cape 
of Good Hope, on board a vessel struck with lightning. If I 
happened to pass simply through a public garden, by the side of 
a bason full of water, I underwent spasmodic affections of ex- 
treme horror. There were particular moments, in which I 
imagined myself bitten, without knowing how or when, by a 
mad-dog. Much worse than this had actually befallen me ; I 
had been bitten by the tooth of calumny. 

One thing is absolutely certain, the paroxysms of this malady 
overtook me only when in the society of men. I found it in- 
tolerable to continue in an apartment where there was company, 
especially if the doors were shut. I could not even cross an 
alley in a public garden, if several persons had got together in 
it. I derived no relief from the circumstance of their being 
unknown to me 5 I recollected, that I had been calumniated by 
my own friends, and for the most honorable actions of my life. 
When I was alone, my malady subsided : I felt myself likewise 
at my ease in places where I saw children only. I frequently 
went for this purpose, and seated myself by the box of the horse- 
shoe in the Fhuilieries, to look at the children playing on the 
grassy parterre with the little dogs which frisked about them. 
rh se were my spectacles and my tournaments. Their inno- 
cence reconciled me to the human species, much better than all 
the wit of our dram-is, and than all the sentences of our philoso- 
phers. But at sight of any one walking up to the place where 
I was, I felt my whole frame agitated, and retired. I often said 
to myself: My sole study has been to merit well of Mankind; 
Wherefore then am I shocked as often as I see them ? To no 
purpose did I call in reason to my aid : my reason could do no- 
thing against a malady which was enfeebling all it'* powers.* 

* GOD has bestowed on me this distinguished mark of his favour, that 
whatever disorder my reason may hs.\ le, I have never lost the use 

of it, in my own apprehension, and especially in I ■ other men. As 

soon as I felt the symptoms of icy indisposition 1 retired into solitude. What 
was then that extraordinary reason, which intimated to me that my ordinary 
reason was disturbed ? I aaf tempted to believe that there is in our soul an 
unchangeable focus of intellectual light, which no darkne 
to overpower. I. is, I am of opinion, this sensorinm which admonishes the 
drunk man that his reason is over-elevated, and the failing' old man, t 1 


The vety efforts which reason made to surmount it served only 
to exhaust her still more, because she employed them against 
herself. Reason called not for vigorous exertion, but for repose. 

Medicine, it is true, did offer me her assistance. She inform- 
ed me that the focus of my disorder was in the nerves. I felt 
it much better than she was able to define it to me. But suppos- 
ing I had not been too poor to avail myself of her prescriptions, 
I had too much experience to put any faith in them. Three 
gentlemen of my acquaintance, tormented with the same species 
of indisposition, died in a short time of three different remedies, 
and these pretended specifics for the cure of the nervous disor- 
der. The first, by bathing and bleeding; the second, by the 
use of Opium ; and the third, by that of ether. These two last 
were both celebrated Physicians,* of the Faculty, at Paris, both 
of high reputation for their medical writings, and particularly on 
the subject of nervous affections. 

I discovered afresh, but for this once by the experience of 
another, what an illusion I had practised upon myself, in ex- 
pecting the cure of my complaints from men ; I discovered how 
vain their opinions and their doctrines were, and what a silly 
part I had been acting through the whole course of my life, in 
rendering myself miserable, while I exerted myself to promote 
their happiness, and in maiming myself to procure ease for 

Nevertheless, from the multitude of the calamities which op- 
pressed me I derived a powerful motive to resignation. On 
comparing the good and the ill with which our fleeting days 
are so strangely variegated, I caught a glimpse of a most im- 
portant truth, not generally known: namely, that Nature pro- 
duces nothing which deserves to be hated ; and that her Au- 
thor, having placed us in a career which must of necessity ter- 
minate in death, has furnished us with as many reasons for be- 

anderitanding is enfeebled. In order to behold the shilling of* that candle 

within us, a man must have his passions stilled, he must be in solitude, and 

all he must be in the habit df retiring into himself. 1 con iider this in- 

iment of our intellectual functions, as the ve of our soul. 

proof of it's immateriality. 

• l; Author of the Journal of "Medicine, and Doctor B 

i tiic Faculty of Medicine at Pa in the very 

^riius of life, <>f their own remedies against 


ing reconciled to the thoughts of dissolution, as for cherishing 
the love of life. 

All the branches of human life are mortal like the trunk. 
Our fortunes, our reputation, our friendships, our loves, all 
the most endeared objects of our affection, perish oftener than 
once before we ourselves die ; and if the most fortunate desti- 
nies were displayed, with all the calamities which have attended 
them, they would appear to us like those stately oaks which 
embellish the earth with their spreading branches, but which 
rear others of still greater size toward Heaven, struck with the 

For myself, a feeble shrub shattered by so many tempests, 
nothing more remained to me that could be lost. Perceiving 
besides that I had henceforth nothing to hope, either from 
others or from myself, I committed myself to GOD alone, and 
engaged my promise to Him, never to expect any thing essen- 
tial to my happ.ness from any one man in particular, to what- 
evcr extremity I might chance to be reduced, and of whatever 
kind it might be. 

My confidence was acceptable to Him, of whom no one ever 
implored assistance in vain. The first fruit of my resignation 
was the calming of my woes. My solicitudes were lulled to 
rest as soon as I censed tq struggle against them. Very soon 
alter there dropped into my lap, without the slightest solicita- 
tion, by the credit of a person whom I did not know,* and in 
the department of a Minister to whom I had never been useful, 
an annual gratuity from his Majesty. Like Virgil, I partook 
of the bread of Augustus. The benefit was of moderate value : 
it was given from year to year ; it was uncertain ; depending on 
the pleasure of a Minister very liable himself to sudden revo- 
lutions, on the caprice of intermediate persons, and on the ma- 
lignity of my enemies, who might sooner or later get it inter- 
cepted by their intrigues. But having reflected on the subject 
for a little, I found that Providence was treating me precisely 

ough T am accustomed, \vh , to mention by name 

in my • persons who 1:. ,-1 to v hom 

for it. 



in the same way in which the Human Race in general is treated, 
on whom Heaven bestows, since the beginning of the World, in 
the crops of the harvest, only an annual subsistence, uncertain, 
borne on herbage continually battered by the winds, and ex- 
posed to the depredations of birds and insects, but it distin- 
guished me in a very advantageous manner, from the greatest 
part of Mankind, in that my crop cost me no sweating nor la- 
bour, and left me the complete exercise of my liberty. 

The firbC use 1 made ot it was to withdraw from perfidious 
men, whom I no longer needed to importune. As soon as I 
saw them no more my soul was restored to tranquillity. Soli- 
tude is a lofty mountain, from whence they appear of a very di- 
minutive size. Solitude however was rather inimical to my 
condition, in disposing the mind too intensely to meditation. 
To J. y. Rousseau I stand indebted for the re-establishment of 
my health. I had read in his immortal productions, among 
other natural truths, that man was made to act and not to me- 
ditate. Hitherto I had exercised my mind, and suffered my 
body to rest ; I now inverted the order of that regimen : I ex- 
ercised the body and gave repose to the mind. I renounced 
the* greatest part of books. I threw my eyes upon the Works 
of Nature, which spake to all my senses a language which nei- 
ther time nor nations have it in their power to alter. My His- 
tory, and my Journals, were the herbage of the fields and -mea- 
dows. My thoughts did not painfully go forth in quest of them, 
as in the case of human systems ; but their thoughts under a 
thousand engaging forms quietly sought out me. In these I 
studied, without effort, the laws of that universal Wisdom with 
which I had been surrounded from the cradle, and on which I 
had hitherto bestowed a very superficial attention. I pursued 
the traces of them in every part of the World, by reading books 
of Travels. These were the only modern books for which I 
retained a relish, because they transported mc into other socie- 
ties than that which I was unhappy, and especially, because they 
spake to me of the various Works of Nature. 

By means ot them I was taught, that there is in every part 
of the Earth a portion of happiness for all men, of whi, 
universally they are deprived ; and that though in a state oi 
war, from our political order which disunites them, they v 


in a state of peace, in the order of Nature, who invites them to 
approximation. These consolatory meditations re-conducted me 
insensibly to my ancient projects of public felicity ; not to exe- 
cute them in person, as formerly, but at least to compose an in- 
teresting picture of it. The speculation simply of a general 
happiness, was now sufficient for my individual felicity. I like- 
wise reflected, that my imaginary plans might one day be realiz- 
ed by men more fortunate than myself. This desire redoubled 
in me at sight of the miserable beings of which our societies 
consist. I felt, above all, from the privations which I myself 
had undergone, the necessity of a political order conformable to 
the order of Nature. In a word, I composed one after the in- 
stinct, and the demands of my own heart. 

Enabled by my own travels, and still more by reading those 
of others, to select on the surface of the Globe a situation pro- 
per for tracing the plan of a happy state of society, I fixed it in 
the bosom of South- America, on the rich and desert shores of 
the river of the Amazons. 

I extended myself in imagination over the face of those im- 
mense forests. There I constructed forts ; I cleared large 
tracks of lands ; I covered them with copious harvests, and 
with orchards presenting exuberant crops of all the fruits foreign 
to Europe. There I offered an asylum to the men of all Na- 
tions, the individuals of which I had seen in distress. There I 
planted the men of Holland and of Switzerland, who have no 
territory in their own Country ; and Russians destitute of the 
means of establishing themselves in their vast solitudes at home ; 
Englishmen tired of the convulsions of their popular liberty, 
and Italians, of the lethargy of their aristocratical govern- 
ments ; Prussians sick of their military despotism, and Poles, 
of their republican anarchy ; Spaniards cf the intolerance of re- 
ligious opinions, and Frenchmen, of the levity of theirs ; Knights 
of Malta and Algerincs ; the peasantry of Bohemia, Poland, 
Russia, Franche-Comte, Lower Brittany, escaped from the ty- 
ranny of their compatriots ; the runaway Negro slaves of our 
barbarous colonies ; the protectors and the protected of all Na- 
tions ; courtiers, gownmen, scholars, soldiers, merchants, finan- 
ciers ; every unfortunate wretch tormented with the maladies of 
European, African, and Asiatic opinions, all of them, with verv 


few exceptions, aiming at mutual oppression, and re-acting upon 
each other by violence or cunning, by impiety or superstition. 

They abjured the national prejudices which had rendered 
them, from the womb, the enemies of other men ; and especially 
that which is the source of all the animosities of the Human 
Race, and which Europe instils with the mother's milk into 
each of her sons — the desire of being foremost. They adopted, 
under the immediate protection of the Author of Nature, the 
principles of universal toleration ; and by that act of general 
justice, they fell back without interruption into the unconstrain- 
ed exercise of their particular character. The Dutchman there 
pursued agriculture and commerce into the very bosom of the 
morasses ; the Swiss, up to the summit of the rocks, and the 
Russian, dexterous in managing the hatchet, into the centre of 
the thickest forests. The Englishman there addicted himself 
to navigation, and to the useful arts which constitute the strength 
of States ; the Italian, to the liberal arts which raise them to 
a flourishing condition ; the Prussian, to military exercises ; 
the Poles to those of horsemanship ; the reserved Spaniard, to 
the talents which require firmness ; the Frenchman, to those 
which re nder life agreeable, and to the social instinct which 
qualifies him to be the bond of union among all Nations. All 
these men, of opinions so very different, enjoyed through the 
medium of toleration, and inter-communication of every thing 
that was best in their several characters, and tempered the de- 
fects of one by the redundancies of another. Thence resulted, 
from education, from laws, and from habit, a combination of 
arts, of talents, of virtues, and of religious principles, which 
formed of the whole but one single people, disposed to exist 
internally in the most perfect harmony, to resist every external 
invader, and to amalgamate with all the rest of the Human Race. 

I committed then to writing all the speculations which I had 
pursued on this subject ; but when I attempted to put them to- 
gether, in order to form to myself, and to convey to others, the 
idea of a republic modelled conformably to the Laws of Nature, 
I perceived that, after all the labour I had bestowed, I never 
could make the illusion pass on any one reasonable being. 

.lo it is true in his Atlantis, Xcnophon in his Cyropedia, 
and Vcnelon in his Tclemachus, have depicted the felicity of 


various political Societies, which have perhaps never existed , 
but h\ means of blending their fictions with historical tradi- 
tions and throwing them back into ages remote, they have be- 
stowed on them a sufficient air of probability, to induce a Read- 
er possessed of indulgence, to receive as realities, recitals which 
he has no longer the power of supporting by lacts. This was 
bv no means the case with my Work. I there went on the sup- 
position, in modern times, and in a well-known part of the 
Globe, of the existence of a very considerable People, formed 
almost entirely of the miserable refuse of the European Nations, 
exalted all at once to the highest degree of felicity ; and this 
rare phenomenon, so worthy of at least the curiosity of Europe, 
ceased to produce any illusion, as soon as it was certain that it 
had no real existence. Besides, the scantiness of theory which I 
had procured, respecting a country so different from ours, and 
so superficially described by travellers, could have furnished to 
mv pictures only a false colouring, and very indistinct 

I relinquished then my political vessel, though! had 'J:our- 
cd upon her for several years with unwearied tnce. 

Like the canoe of Robinson Crusoe, I left her in thr | 

where I had moulded her, for want of power to put her in mo- 
tion, and to carry her along the tide of human opinio 

To no purpose did my imagination perform the tour of the 
Globe. Amidst so many sites presented for the happiness of 
Man, by Nature, I could not so much as find where to put 
down the illusory habitation of a People happy in conformity to 
her laws: for neither the republic of St. Paul, near to Brasil, 
formed of banditti who made war upon the whole World; nor 
the evangelical association of William Penn, in North-America, 
which goes not even so far as to act upon the defensive against 
their enemies ; nor the conventual redemptions* of the Jesuits 

* There were, in my opinion, many defects in the establishments of the 
Jesuits in Paragua. As these monastic orders do not marry, that they had 
not within themselves the independent principle of existence ; that they al- 
v-svs recruited the fraternity with Europeans, and that they formed, even in 
their Redemptions, one "Xation within another Nation ; hence it came to pass, 
that the destruction of their Order in Europe involved in it that of their es- 
tablishments in America. Besides, the conventual regularity, and the multi- 
plied ceremonies which they had introduced into their political admii 
lion, could suit only an infant People, who must be incessantly kepi 


in Paraguay ; nor the voluptuous islanders of the South-Sea, 
who, in the very lap of sensuality, offer up human sacrifices,* 
appear to me the proper representatives of a People making a 
right use, in the state of Nature, of all their faculties physical 
and moral. 

Besides, though these fraternities presented to me certain re- 
publican images, the first was a state of downright anarchy ; 
the second simply an association ; under the protection of the 
State in which it was contained ; and the other two formed he- 
reditary aristocracies merely, under which a particular class of 
citizens, having reserved all power to itself, even to the dispo- 
sal of the national subsistence, kept the people at large in a state 
of perpetual tutelage, without the possibility of their ever emerg- 
ing from the class of Neophytes, or of Toutous.f 

My soul, finding no complacency in ages present, winged 
it's way toward the ages of Antiquity, and alighted first of all 
among the Nations of Arcadia. 

This happy portion of Greece presented to me climates and 
situations similar to those which are dispersed over the rest of 
Europe. I could fashion them at least, into pictures variegated, 
and possessing the advantages of resemblance. It was filled 
with mountains of considerable elevation, some of which, such 
as that of Phoe, covered with snow all the year round, rendered 
it similar to Switzerland. On the other hand, it's morasses, 
such as that of Stvmphale, gave it in this part of it's territory 
a resemblance to Holland. It's vegetables and it's animals were 
the same with those which are scattered over the soil of Italy, 

ulintr-string-, and led by the eyes. They arc not the less on that account 

' ing of immortal honour, for having- collected and subjected to humane 

a multitude of barbarians, and for having instructed them in the Arts 

useful to human life, by preserving them from the corruption of civilized 

• Thej did likewise eat dogs, those natural friends of man. I have re- 
marked that everj People among- whom this is practised, were not disposed 
: e human flesh when occasion prompted : to cat the flesh of dog's is a 
step toward anthropophagy. 

f The name of a clai of the commonalty in the Island of Otaheite. 

ami in l he other islands of that Archipelago. They are not permitted to eat 

flesh, which is there of an excellent quality, and excccding-ly common. 

-, who are the chiefs. The Toutous bring- up the 

i :i them. Consult Captain Cook's Voj 

Vol. Ill Q 


of France and of the North of Europe. It produced olive-trees, 
vines, apple-trees, corn of all kinds, pasture ; forests of oaks, of 

pines, and of firs ; oxen, horses, sheep, goats, wolves The 

occupations of the Arcadians were the same with those of our 
pers .ntry. They were classed into husbandmen, shepherds, 
vine-dressers, huntsmen. But in this they differed widely 
from ours, they were very warlike externally, and very peacea- 
ble at home. As soon as the state was menaced with war, they 
voluntarily appeared for it's defence, every man at his proper 
post. There was a considerable proportion of Arcadians among 
the ten thousand Greeks who, under the command of Xenopfwn> 
effected the famous retreat out of Persia. They were much de- 
voted to religion ; for most of the Gods of Greece were natives 
of their Country ; Mercury on Mount Cyllene ; Jupiter on 
Mount Lyceum ; Pan on Mount Minalus, or, according to 
others, amidst the forests of Mount Lyceum, where he was 
worshipped with singular devotion. Arcadia too was the thea- 
tre on which Hercules exhibited the most astonishing of his la- 
borious achievements. 

With those sentiments of patriotism and of religion the Ar- 
cadians blended that of love, which has at length acquired the 
ascendant, as the principal idea which that People have left us of 
themselves. For political and religious institutions vary in 
every Country with the lapse of ages, and are peculiar to it; 
but the laws of Nature are of all periods of time, and interests 
all Nations. Hence it has come to pass that the Poets, ancient 
and modern, have represented the Arcadians as a Nation of 
amorous shepherds, who excelled in Poetry and Music, which 
are in all countries the expressive languages of love. Virgil, 
in particular, frequently celebrates their talents, and their rural 
felicity. In his ninth Eclogue, which breathes the gentlest me- 
lancholy, he thus introduces Gallus, the son of Pollio, inviting 
the Arcadian swains to deplore with him the loss of his mis- 
tress Lycoris: 

Cantabitis, Arcades, inquit, 
Montibus haec vestris. Soli cantare periti, 
Arcades. O mihitum quam moliiter ossa quiescent, 
Vestrameos ohm si fistula dicat amorce ' 


Atque utinam ex vobis unus, vestrique fuissem 
Aut custos gregis, aut maturx vinitor uvx! * 

" You shall sing," says he, " O ye Arcadians, these plaintive 
" strains of mine, on your own mountains. Arcadians, you 
" alone are skilled in song. O, how softly shall my bones re- 
" pose, if your pipe shall one day immortalize my unfortunate 
" loves ! And would to Heaven I had been one of you, though 
" in the humble station of a shepherd's boy, or of a grape-ga- 
" therer in the vineyard." 

G alius, the son of a Roman Consul, in the age of Augustus, 
considers the condition of the Arcadian swains as so enviable, 
that he presumes not to aspire to the felicity of being among 
them a proprietary shepherd, or the dresser of a vineyard which 
he could call his own, but only to that of a simple keeper of cat- 
tle: custos gregis ; or of one of those hireling labourers whom 
they accidentally picked up as they went on this way, to assist 
in treading out the ripened clusters: Matures vinitor uvce. 

Virgil abounds in such delicate shades of sentiment, which 
totally disappear in translations, and especially in mine. 

Although the Arcadians passed a considerable part of their 
life in singing, and in making love, Virgil does not represent 
them as an effeminate race of men. On the contrary, he assigns 
to them simple manners, and a particular character of force, of 
piety, and of virtue, which is confirmed by all the Historians 
who have made mention of them. He introduces them as act- 
ing a very distinguished and important part in the origin of the 
Roman Empire ; for when Eneas sailed up the Tiber, in the 
view of forming alliances with the Nations who inhabited the 
shores of that river, he found at the place of his disembarka- 
tion, a small cityj called Pallanteum, after the name of Pallas 

" To your lov'd mountains and your verdant plains. 
Repeat, Arcadians, these my love-lorn strains • 
Tn magic numbers you alone excel, 
LullM to soft rest my lifeless limbs shall dwell 
Should your sweet notes immortalize my fl: 
And give to (.'al/us dead a deathless name, 
Oh, bad I been, of you some shepherd's swain ! 
');• cull'd tl ip'd the gol 


son to Evander King of the Arcadians, who had built it. This, 
city was afterwards enclosed within the precinct of the city of 
Rome, to which it served as it's first fortress. For this reason 
it is that Virgil denominates King Evander the Founder of the 
Roman fortress : 

Hex Evandnis, Romanx Conditor arcis. 

-.{.veid, Lib. viii. Ver. 313. 

I feel an irresistible propensity to insert in this place, some 
passages of the iEneid which have a direct relation to the man- 
ners of the Arcadians, and which discover at the same time their 
influence on those of the Roman People. I am abundantly sen- 
sible that I shall give but a very indifferent translation of those 
passages, as I have done of all the Latin quotations already in- 
troduced into my Book ; but the delicious poesy of Virgil will 
indemnify the Reader for my bad prose, and gratify the taste 
which it will inspire into myself of what is natural to me. This 
digression besides is by no means foreign to the general plan of 
this Work. I shall produce in it various examples of the pow- 
erful effects arising from consonances and contrasts, which I 
have considered, in my preceding Studies, as the first moving 
principles of Nature. We shall see that, after her example, 
Virgil abounds with them, and that they alone are the cause of 
the harmony of his style, and of the magic of his pictures. 

First, Eneas, by command of the God of the Tiber who had 
appeared to him in a dream, comes to solicit the alliance of 
Evander, in order to his making good an establishment in Italy. 
He avails himself of the anciently allied origin of their families, 
which both descended from Atlas ; the one by Electra the other 
by Maia. Evander makes no reply on the subject of this gene- 
alogy ; but at sight of Eneas, he recollects with delight the fea- 
tures, the voice, and the address of Anchises, whom he had, so 
long before, entertained in his palace within the walls of Phe- 
neum, when that Prince on his way to Salamis with Priam, 
who was going to visit his sister Hesione, took the cold moun- 
s of Arcadia in his road : 

Ut te fortissimc Teucrum 
iipio agnoscoque libena ! ut verba pari 


Et vocem Jlnchimv magni vultumque recordor ! 
Nam memini Hesiones visentem regna sororis 
Laomedontiadem Priamum, Salamina petentetn 
Prolinus Arcadix gelidos mvisere fines.* 

JEneid, B. viii. L. 154—159. 

Evander was then in the flower of his age ; he felt an ardent 
desire to join his hand in friendship to that of Anchises : dextra 
conjungere dextram. He calls to mind the tokens of friend- 
ship which he had received of him, and his presents, among 
which were two bridles bitted with gold, now made over to his 
son Pallas, as symbols no doubt of the prudence so necessary 
to a young Prince : 

Frxnaque bina, nieus quae nunc habet, aurea, Pallas. \ 

JEneid, B. viii. L. 168. 

And he immediately adds : 

Ergo et quam petitis, juncta est mihi fuedere dextra : 
Et lux cum primum terris se crastina reddct, 
Auxilio lxtos dimittam, opibusquc juvabo.t 

JExeid, B. viii. L. 169—171. 

* On all thy features how I dwell with joy ! 

Welcome, thrice welcome, glorious Prince of Troy ! 
How in thy face, my ancient friend I see ! 
Jlnchises looks, and lives, and speaks in thee ! 
Well 1 recal great Priam's stately port, 
When once he sought his royal sister's court 
On Salaminian shores, with all his tram ; 
And took his way through our Arcadian plain. 

f On me, at parting, generous he bestow'd 

golden bridles, that refulgent glow*d, 
(\ glorious present, by my son posses' ;) 
With a rich quiver and cmbroidcr'd vest. 

i The peace you ask we give ; our friendship plight, 
loon as mom reveals the purple light, 
\\ ith our confederate troops, a martial train, 
Safe I'll dismiss thee from these, walls again. 


Tit i 



" My right hand, then, has sealed from that day the alliance 
" which you now solicit ; and as soon as to-morrow's dawn shall 
" re-visit the Earth, I will joyfully dismiss you to the field with 
" the succours which you ask, and will support you to the ut~ 
" most extent of my ability." 

Thus Evander, though a Greek, and consequently a natural 
enemy to the Trojans, gives his aid to Eneas, purely from the 
recollection of the friendship which he entertained for his anci- 
ent guest Anchises. The hospitality which he had formerly ex- 
pressed to the father, determines him now to support the son. 

It is not foreign to my subject to remark in this place, to the 
honour of Virgil and of his heroes, that as often as Eneas, under 
the pressure of calamity, is reduced to the necessity of having 
recourse to the assistance of strangers, he never fails to remind 
them of either the glory of Troy, or of ancient family alliances, 
or to urge some other political reason calculated to interest 
them in his favour ; but those who tender him their services 
are always induced to act thus from motives of virtue. When 
thrown by the tempest on the Lybian shore, Dido is determined 
to afford him an asylum by a sentiment still more sublime than 
the recollection of any particular hospitality, highly respected 
as it was among the ancients ; but by the general interest which 
we take in the miserable. In order to render the effect of this 
more dignified, and more affecting, she applies to herself the 
need of it, and reverberates from her own heart, on the Trojan 
Prince, only the same degree of sympathy which she demands 
for herself. These are her words : 

Me quoque per multos similis fortuna labores 
Jactatam, hac demum voluit consistere terra. 
Xon ignara mali, miseris succurrere disco.* 

JEneid, B. i. L. 632— 634. 

a A fortune similar to thine, after having pursued me too 
" through distresses innumerable, permitted me at length to 
" form a settlement on these shores. Nurtured myself in the 
" school of adversity, I am instructed to succour the miserable." 

• My wanderings and my fate resembling' yours, 
At length I settled on these Lybian shores ; 
And, touch'd with miseries myself have known. 


Virgil uniformly prefers natural to political reasons, and the 
interest of Mankind to national interests. Hence it comes to 
pass that his Poem, though composed to diffuse the particular 
glory of the Roman People, interests the men of all ages, and 
of all Nations. 

To return to King Evander : He was employed in offering a 
sacrifice to Hercules, at the head of his Arcadian Colony, at 
the time Eneas landed. After having engaged the Trojan 
Chief and his attendants to partake of the sacred banquet which 
his arrival had interrupted, he instructs his guest in the origin 
of this sacrifice, by relating to him the history of the robber 
Cacus, whom Hercules put to death in a cavern adjoining to the 
Aventine Mount. He presents him with a tremendous picture 
of the combat of the son of Jupiter with that flame-vomiting 
monster ; he then adds : 

* Ex illo celebratus honos, laetique minores 
Servavere diem .- primusque Potitius auctor, 
Et domus Herculei custos Pinaria sae.ri, 
Hanc aram luco statuit : quae maxima semper 
Dicetur nobis, et erit quae maxima semper. 
Quarc agite, O juvenes, tantarum in munere laudum, 
Cingite fronde comas, et pocula porgite dexlris ; 
Commuhemque vocate deum, et data vina volentes. 
Dixerat : Herculea bicolor cum populus umbra 
Velavitque comas, foliisque innexa pependit : 
Et sacer implevit dextram scyplius. Ocius omnes 
In mensam lxti libant, divosque precantur. 

Devexo interea proprior fit vesper Olympo : 
Jamque sacerdotes, primusque Potitius, ibant. 
Pcllibus in morem cincti, flammasque ferebanl. 
Instaurant epulas, et mcnsae grata seconds 
Dona ferunt : cumulantque oneratis laneibus aras. 
Turn Salii ad cantus, incensa alteria circum. 
Populeis ad sunt evincti tempora ramis. 

iExEiD, B. viii. L. 268—286. 

om thai blest hour th' Arcadian tribes bestowed 
These solemn honours on their guardian God. 
Potitius first, his gratitude to prove, 
Axlor'd Alcidei in the shady grove ; 
And with the old Pinarian sacred line 
rhese altars rais'd' and paid the rights divine, 
Bights, which our sons for ever shall maintain ; 
And ever sacred shall the grove remain 


" From that period this sacred festival has been celebrated, 
" and exuiting posterity hails the return of the annual day. Po- 
" titins has the honour of having first instituted it, and the Pi- 
K narian Family, to whom belongs the direction of this solemn 
" service in honour of Hercules, reared this altar in the hallow- 
" ed grove : whic h ever shall be called, and in my esteem ever 
" shall be the most venerable of Altars. Come on then, my 
" young friends from Troy, in grateful remembrance of merit 
" so exalted, crown your brows with the foliage of his favourite 
a tree, put your right hand to the goblet ; invoke a deity who 
" shall be our common protector, and pour out your joyful li- 
" bations of the juice of the grape. He said, and instantly a 
" poplar-branch of double-coloured foliage, from the Herculean 
" tree, shaded his hoary locks, and in twisted sprigs hung grace- 
" fully down from his temples : The sacred bowl filled his 
" right hand. With holy ardour every one immediately pour- 
" ed his libation on the table, and preferred his prayer. 

" Meanwhile the star of Evening began to appear, the har- 
" binger of approaching night : and now a procession of Priests, 
" Potitius led the train, moved along, dressed, as the order of 
" the feast required, in the fleecv skins of the flock, and with 
" flaming torches in their hands. The banquet is renewed, and 
" the grateful delicacies of a second table are served up : while 

Come then, with us to great Alcides pray, 
And crown your heads, and solemnize the day. 
Invoke our common God with hymns divine, 
And from the goblet pour the generous wine. 
He said, and with the poplar's sacred boughs, 

--real Alcides, binds his hoary brows ; 
Raised the crown'd goblet high, in open view : -x 

With him, the guests the holy rite pursue, C 

And on the board the rich libation threw. J 

Now from before the rising shades of night, 
Koll'd down the steep of Heaven, the beamy light. 
Clad in the fleecy spoils of sheep, proceed 
The holy priests ; Potitius at their head. 
With flaming brands and offerings, march the train, 
And bid the hallow'd altars biaze again ; 
With care the copious viands they dispose ; 
And for their guests a second banquet rose. 
The fires curl high ; the Salii dance around 
To sacred strains, with shady poplars crown'd p r 


" the altars are loaded with piles of rich offerings. The Sali- 
" ana advance, their brows adorned with bows of poplar, and 
" surround the blazing altars with festive songs and dances.' 

cry circumstance here detailed by the Poet is far from 
being a mere poetical fiction, but is a real tradition of the Ro- 
man History. According to Titus Livius, in the first Book of 
his History, Potitius and Pinarius were the Chiefs of two il- 
lustrious Roman families. Evander instructed them in the 
ritual of the worship to be' paid to Hercules, and committed the 
conduct of it to their charge. Their posterity enjoyed the dig- 
nity of this priesthood, down to the censorship of Appius Clau- 
dius. The altar of Hercules, Ara Maxima, was at Rome, be- 
tween the Aventine and the Palatine mountains, in the open 
place called Forum Boarium. The Salians were the Priests of 
Mars, instituted by Numa, to the number of twelve. Virgil 
proceeds on the supposition, according to some commentators, 
that they had existed ever since the days of King Evander, and 
that they sung in the sacrifices of Herades. But there is a 
great appearance of probability, that Virgil in this likewise fol- 
lowed the Historical tradition ; for we know how carefully he 
collected, with a kind of religious ardour, even the slightest 
prognostics and the most frivolous predictions, to which h^ as- 
signed a first-rate importance the moment that they appeared 
in any respect connected with the foundation of the Roman 

Rome was indebted then to the Arcadians for her principal 
religious usages. She was still farther indebted to them for 
Others much more interesting to humanity ; for Plutarch de- 
rives one of the etymologies of the name Patricians, an order 
established by Romulus, from the word " Patrocinium, which 
" means patronage, or protection ; and this word is used to 
" this day in the same sense, because one of the leading men 
" who accompanied Evander into Italy was named Patronus, 
" who being a person noted for a character of beneficence, and 
" for granting support to the poorer and more oppressed class 
u of Mankind, communicated his name to that office of huma- 
" nity." 

The sacrifice and the banquet of Evander terminated in a 
faymn to the honour of Hercules. I cannot resist the inclina- 
L. III. R 


tion which I feel to insert it here, in order to make it appear, 
that the same people who sung so melodiously the loves of 
shepherds, were equally capable of celebrating the virtues of 
Heroes : and that the same Poet who, in his Eclogues, tunes 
so sweetly the rural pipe, can blow as vigorously the epic trum- 

* Hie juvenum chorus, ille senum, qui carmine laudes 
Herculeas et facia ferunt : ut prinio novercze 
Monstra manu geminosque premens eliserit angues : 
Ut bello egregias idem disjeccrit urbes, 
Trojamque, JEchaliamque : ut duros mille labores 
Rcge sub Eurystheo, fatis Junonis iniqux, 
Pertulerit. Tu nubigenas invicte bimembres, 
Hylaeumque, Pholunique manu : tu Cressia lhactas 
Frodigia, et vastum Nemea subrupe Leonem. 
Te Stygii tremuere lacus ; te janitor Orci, 
Ossa super recubans, antra Bemtsa cruento. 

' The choirs of old and young-, in lofty lays, 
Resound greal Hercules'' immortal praise. 
How first, his infant hands the snakes o'erthrcw 
That Juno sent ; and the dire monsters slew. 
\\ hat mighty cities next his arms destroy, 
Th' JEchalian walls, and stately towers of Troy. 
The thousand labours of the hero's hands, 
Enjoin'd by proud Eurystheut? stern commands. 
And Joves revengeful Queen. Thy matchless might 
U'ercame the cloud-born Centaurs in the fight ; 
fL'Lcus, Pholut, sunk beneath thy feet, 
\nd the grim bull, whose rage dispeopled Crete. 
Beneath thy arm the Nemean monster fell ; 
Thy arm with terror fill'd the realms of Hell ; 
Ev'n Hell's grim porter shook with dire dismay, 
Shrunk back, and trembled o'er his mangled prey 
No shapes of danger could thy soul affright, 
Nor huge Tup/ucus, towering to the fight, 
Nor Lerna's fiend thy courage could confound, 
With all her hundred heads, that hiss'd around. 
Hail, mighty Chief, advane'd to Heavn's abodes ! 
Hail, son of Jove ,■ a Cod among the Gods ! 
Be present to the vows thy suppliants pay, 
And with a smile these grateful rites survey. 
Thus they — but Cams' cavern crowns the strain, 
Where the grim monster breath'd his flames in vain. 
To the glad song, the vales, the woods rebound, 
The lofty hills reply, and echo to the sound. T' i 


c te ulla; facics, non terruit ipse Typhw 
Ardus, arma tcncns : non te rationis egentem 
Lcrnaeus turba capitum circumstc-tit angmis. 
Salve, vera Jovis proles, decus addite Divis : 
Et nos, et tua dexter adi pede sacra secundo, 
Talia carminibus celebrant : super omnia Caci 
Spcluncain adjiciunt, spirantemque ignibus ipsum. 
Consonat omne nemus strepitu, collesque resultant., B. viii. L. 287—305. 

" On tkis hand were arranged a choir of youth, on that a ve- 
" neratile band of old men, to celebrate the praises and the 
11 mighty achievements of Hercules : How, with the pressure 
" of his potent fingers he stifled to death two fearful snakes, the 
" first monsters armed against him by his cruel step-mother : 
" how he humbled the two proud cities, Troy and jEchalia : 
" how he triumphantly surmounted a thousand painful labours 
" under King Eurystheus, imposed by the resentment of unre- 
" lenting Juno: Thou, invincible Hero, thou, by thine arm, sub- 
" duedst the double-limbed cloud-born Centaurs, Hyloeus and 
" Pholus ; the monsters of Crete fell by thy stroke, and the for- 
" midable lion under the Nemean rock ; the Stygian lakes 
" trembled at thy approach ; as did the janitor of Hell, reclined 
u on a heap of half-gnawed bones in his bloody den : No appear - 
" ance of danger appalled thee, not even the gigantic Typhosus 
" himself, rushing upon thee tremendous in arms : Thou wert 
" not dismayed, though enclosed on every side by the many- 
" headed snake of Lerna. Hail, undoubted offspring of mighty 
" Jove ! add new lustre to the skies : Graciously bend down 
" to hear our vows, and to accept our sacrifices." 

" Such was the lofty subject of their song : above all the rest 
" they exalted the prodigies of the fearful den of Cacus, and 
l< the monster himself vomiting forth streams of fire. The 
" spacious grove was filled with the harmony, and the noise re- 
" bounded from hill to hill." 

These ai'e strains worthy of the manly breasts of Arcadians : 
We seem to hear them filling the ambient air in the echoes of 
woods and of the mountains : 

omne net, Itant 


Virgil always expresses natural consonances. They redouble 
the effect of his pictures, and infuse into them the sublime sen- 
timent of infinity. Consonances are in poetry what reflexes are 
in painting. 

This hymn will stand a comparison with the finest odes of 
Horace. Though composed in regular Alexandrine verses, it 
has all the elegant turn, and the movements, of a lyric compo- 
sition, especially in it's transitions. 

Evander afterwards relates to Eneas the history of the anti- 
quities of the Country, beginning with Saturn, who dethroned 
by Jupiter retired thither, and there established the Golden 
Age. He informs his guests that the Tiber, anciently called 
Albula, had acquired it's present name from the Giant Tibris, 
who made a conquest of the shores of that river. He shews 
him the altar and the gate, since called Carmentalis by the Ro- 
mans, in honour of the nymph Carmenta his mother, by whose 
advice he had come to form a settlement in that place, after 
having been banished from Arcadia his native Country. He 
points out to him an extensive wood, of which Romulus in after 
times availed himself as an asylum; and at the bottom of a 
rock, the grotto of Pan-Lupercal, so called, he tells him, in imi- 
tation of that of the Arcadians of Mount Lyceum. 

; Nee non et sacri monstrat nemus Argilcti : 
Testaturque lor urn, et lethum docet hospitis Argi. 
Ilinc ad Tarpciam sedem et Capitolia ducit, 
Aurea nunc, olim sylvestribus horrida dumis. 
Jam turn religio pavidos terrebat agrestes 
Dira loci, jam turn sylvam saxumque tremebant. 

' Here, Pan, beneath the rocks thy temple stood. 
There, the renown'd asylum in the wood. 
Now points the monarch, where, by vengeful steel 
His murder'd guest, poor hapless Argus fell ! 
Next, to the capitol their course they hold, 
Then roof'd with reeds, but blazing now with gold 
Ev'n then her awful sanctity appear' d ; 
The swains die local majesty rcver'd. 
\11 pale with sacred horror, they survey'd 
The solemn mountain and the reverend shade, 
le God, the monarch said, some latent God 
Dwells in that gloom, and haunts the- frowning v 



Hoc nemns, hunc, inquit, frondoso vertice collem, 
(Quis Deus incertum est) habitat Deus, Arcades ipsum 
Credunt se vidisse Jovem : cum saepe nigrantem 
JEgida concuteret dextra, nimbosquc cieret. 
Haec duo praeterea disjectis oppida muris, 
Reliquias veterumque vides monumenta virorum. 
Hanc Janus pater, hanc Baturnus conditi urbem : 
Janicidum huic, illi fuerat Saturnia nomen. 

iENEiD, B. viii. L. 345—358. 

" He next shews him the sacred grove of Argiletum: 
" makes a solemn appeal to that awful spot, and relates the 
" story of his murdered guest Argus. Then he conducts him 
" to the Tarpeian rock ; and to the Capitol, now shining with 
" burnished gold, once clothed all over with wild shrubbery. 
" Even then the gloomy religious horror of this spot terrified 
" the trembling rustics ; even then they shuddered, as they ap- 
" proached the rocky precipice and the wood. Some God, says 
" he, but which of the celestial powers we know not, inhabits 
" this grove and this shaggy-topped eminence. Our Arcadians 
" imagine they have had a glimpse of Jupiter himself, from 
" time to time shaking the heart-appalling iEgis with his for- 
" midable right-hand, and rousing into fury the thunder-im- 
" pregnated clouds. You farther see these two ruinous cities, 
" with walls crumbling into dust, the sad remains and venerable 
" monuments of personages who flourished in ages long since 
" past. Janus founded the one, and Saturn the other: hence, 
" this obtained the name of Janiculum, and that of Saturnia." 
Here are the principal monuments of Rome, as well as the 
earliest religious establishments ascribed to the Arcadians. The 
Romans celebrated the feast of Saturn in the month of Decem- 
ber. During that period of festivity the masters and the slaves 
sat down at the same table ; and these last then enjoyed the li- 

Oft our Arcadians deem, their wondering- eyes 
Have Been great Jove, dread sovereign of the skies ; 
High o'er their heads, the God his sepia held, 
And blackcn'd Heav'n with clouds, and shoukth' immortal shield ' 
In ruins tliere two mighty towns behold, 
Rais'd by our fires ; huge monuments of old ! 
Eld Sutuims' name they proudly bore, 
Hi I' two great founders '..but are now no more ! — Pitt 



berty of saying and of doing whatever they pleased, in memory 
of the ancient equality of Mankind, which prevailed in the 
reign of Saturn. The altar, and the gate Carmentalis, long sub- 
sisted at Rome, as well as the grotto of Pan-Lupercal, which 
was under Mount Palatine. 

Virgil opposes, with the ability of a great Master, the rusti- 
city of the ancient Sites which surrounded the small Arcadian 
city of Palentum, to the magnificence of those very places with- 
in the precincts of Rome ; and their rude altar, with their vene- 
rable and religious traditions under Evander, to the gilded tem- 
ples of a city in which nothing venerable or religious was any 
longer to be seen, under Augustus. 

There is here likewise another moral contrast, which pro- 
duces a more powerful effect than all the physical contrasts, and 
which admirably paints the simplicity, and the uncorrupted in- 
tegrity, of the King of Arcadia. It is when that Prince justifies 
himself, without being called upon to do so, from the suspicion 
of having caused the death of his guest Argus, and appeals, as a 
witness of his innocence, to the wood which he had consecrated 
to him. This Argus, or this Argian, had insinuated himself 
into his house with an intention to murder him : but, having 
been detected, was condemned to die. Evander had a tomb 
reared to his memory, and here solemnly protests that he hud 
not violated in his case the sacred rights of hospitality. The 
piety of this good King, and the protestation which he makes 
of his innocence, respecting a stranger who was deeply criminal 
against himself, and justly condemned by the laws, forms a won- 
derfully fine contrast to the illegal proscriptions of guests, of 
parents, of friends, of patrons, whereof Rome had been the thea- 
tre for an age before, and which had excited in no one citizen 
either scruple or remorse. The quarter of Argiletum extended, 
in Rome, along the banks of the Tiber. The town Janiculum 
had been built on the mount of that name, and Saturnia on the 
rock first called the Tarpeian and afterwards the Capitol, the 
place of Jupiter's residence. This ancient tradition of Jupi- 
ter' 1 s frequently collecting the clouds on the summit of this fo- 
rest-covered rock, and there brandishing his dark aegis, confirms 
what has been said in my preceding Studies of the hydraulic 
attraction of the summits of mountains, and of their forests, 



which are the sources of rivers. This was the case likewise 
with Olympus, frequently involved in clouds, on which the 
Greeks fixed the habitation of the Gods. In the ages of igno- 
rance, religious sentiments explained physical effects ; in ages 
of illumination, physical effects bring men back to religious 
sentiments. Nature at all times speaks to Man the same lan- 
guage in different dialects. 

Virgil completes the contrast of the ancient monuments of 
Rome, by presenting a picture of the poor and simple habitation 
of the good King Evander, in the very place where so many 
sumptuous palaces were afterwards reared. 

* Talibus inter se dictis ad tecta subibant 
Pauperis Evandri : passimque armenla, videbant 
Romanoque Foro et lautis mugire Carinis. 

Ut ventum ad sedes ; Haec inquit, limina victor 

Alcides subiit : hsec ilium rcgia cepit. 

Aude, hospes, contemnere opes, et te quoque dignum 

Finge Deo, rebusque veni non asper egenis. 

Dixit ; et angusti subler fastigia tecti 

Ingentem iEneam duxit : stratisque locavit, 

Eflultum foliis etpelle Libystidis ursee. 

JEseiv, B. viii. L. 359—368. 

" While thus conversing, they drew nigh to the lowly roof of 
" the poor Evander: and saw the cattle strolling up and down, 
" and heard their lowing, in what is now the Roman Forum, 
" and the splendid quarter of the Rostra. Being arrived, This 
" threshhold, says he, received the victorious Alcides ; this hum- 
" ble palace entertained a guest so illustrious. Dare like him, 
" my beloved guest, to look down on wealth, and thus approve 

* Tbus they convers'd on works of ancient fame, 
Till to the Monarch's humble courts they came 
There oxen stalk'd, where palaces are rais'd, 
And bellowing herds in the proud forum graz'd 
Lo ! said the good old King, this poor abode 
ReceivM great Hercules the victor God ! 
Thou, too, as nobly, raise thy soul above 

All pomps, and emulate the seed of Jove. 
With that, the hero's hand the Monarch prest, 
And to the mansion led the godlike ^ucst. 
rhere OO ft bear's rough spoils his limbs he laid, 
\nd swelling foliage heap'd the homely bed. -I'it i 


" thy celestial origin, and kindly accept the hospitality of this 
" poor mansion. He spake, and conducted the mighty Eneas 
" through a narrow portal ; and placed him on a couch of foli- 
" age, covered with the skin of a Lybian bear." 

It is here evident how deeply Virgil is penetrated with the 
simplicity of Arcadian manners, and with what delight he sets 
Evander's cattle a lowing in the Forum Romanum, and makes 
them pasture in the proud quarter of the city distinguished by 
the name of Carince, thus called, because Pompey had there built 
a palace ornamented with the prows of ships in bronze. This 
rural contrast produces the most agreeable effect. The author 
of the Eclogues recollected assuredly in this place the shep- 
herd's pipe. Now he is going to lay down the trumpet, and to 
assume the flute. He proceeds to oppose to his picture of the 
dreadful conflict with Cacns, to the hymn of Hercules, to the re- 
ligious traditions of the Roman monuments, and to the austere 
manners of Evander, the most voluptuous episode of his whole 
Work. It is that of Venus coming to solicit Vidcan to make a 
suit of armour for Eneas. 

* Nox ruit, et fuscis tellurem amplectitur alis : 

Al Venus hand animo exterrita mater, 
Laurcntuiiiqnc minis et duro mota tumultu, 
Vulcanum alloquhur, thalamoque conjugis aureo 
Incipit, et dictis divinum aspirat amorem : 
Dum bello Argolici vestabantPergania reges 
Debita, casurasque inimicis ignibus arces, 
Non ullum anxihum miseris, non arma rogavi 
Artis opisque tux ; nee te, carissime conjux, 
Incassumve tuos volui exercere labores, 
Quamvis et Priami deberem plunma natis, 
Et durum iEneae flevissem srepe laborem. 

* Now awful Night her solemn darkness brings, 
And stretches o'er the World her dusky Mings : 
When Verms, (trembling at the dire alarms 

Of hostile Latium, and her sons in arms,) 
In those still moments, thus to Vulcan said, 
Reclin'd and leaning on the golden bed : 
(Her thrilling words her melting consort move, 
And every accent fans the flames of love :) 
When cruel Greece and unrelenting Tate 
Conspii'd to sink in dust the Trojan state, 
As Ilion's doom was seal'd, I ne'er implor'd 
In those long wars, the labours of my lord ; 


\unr, Jovis imperiis, llutiilorum constitit oris : 
Ergo eadem Bupplez venio, ct sanctum mihinumen 
Arma rogo, genitrix nato. Te filia Ncrei, 

Te potuit lachrymis Tithonia flectere conjux, 

Aspice qui coeant populi quae maenia elausis 

rum acuant portis, in me excidiumque meorum-. 

Dixerat ; et niveis hinc atque hinc diva lacerlis 

Cunctantem amplexu molli'fovet; illc repente 

Accepit solitam flammam, notusque medullas 

Tntravit calor, et labefacta per ossa cucurrit : 
ii secus atque olim tonitru cum rupta corusco 

Ignea rima micans percurrit lumine nimbos. 

Sensit laeta dolis, et forms conscia conjux. 

Turn pater acterno fatur devictus amore : 

Quid causas petis ex alto ? Fiducia cessit 

Quo tibi, Diva mci ! similis si cura fuisset, 

Turn quoque fas nobis Teucros armare fuisset. 

Ncc pater omnipotens Trojam, nee fata vetabant 

Stare, decemque alios Priamum superesse per anno? 1 

Et nunc, si bellare paras, atque haec tibi mens i 

Quicquid in arte mea possum promittere curae, 

Nor urg'd my dear, dear consort to impart, 
For a lost empire his immortal art ; 
Tho' Priam's royal offspring claim'd my care, 
Tho' much I sorrow'd for my godlike heir. 
Now as the Chief, by Jove's supreme command 
Has reach'd at length the destin'd Latin land ; 
To thee, my guardian power, for aid I run ! 
A Goddess begs ; a mother for a son. 
Oh ! guard the hero from these dire alarms. 
Forge, for the Chief, impenetrable arms. 
See, what proud cities every hand employ, 
To arm new hosts against the sons of Troy , 
On me and all my people, from afar 
See what assembled nations pour to war 
Yet not in vain her sorrows Thetis shed, 
Nop the fair partner of Tithonus? bed, 
When they, of old, implor'd my Lord to grac- 
With arms immortal, an inferior race, 
fharlhen, nor let thy Queen in vain implore 
Tlie gift those Goddesses obtain'd before. 

This said, her arms, that match the Winter snows.. 
Around her unresolving Lord she throws ; 
When lo ! more rapid than the lightning flies. 
That gilds with momentary beams the skies, 
The thrilling flames of love, without controul, 
Plewthro' God, and firM his sfl'i'l. 

Vol. Ill S 


Quod fieri ferro, liquidove potest electro, 
Quantum ijgnes animxque valent : absiste, precando. 
Virions indubitare tuis. Ea verba locutus, 
Optatos dedit amplexus : placidumque petivit 
Conjugis infusus gremio, per membra soporem. 

iENEiD, B. viii. L. 369—406 

" Night hastens on, and encircles the Earth with dusky 
" wings. But Venus, whose maternal breast was agitated with 
" well-grounded apprehensions, alarmed at the threats of the 
" Laurentian Chief, and the dire preparations of approaching 
" war, addresses herself to Vulcan, and, reclined on her spouse's 
" golden bed, thus begins, while love celestial flowed from her 
" lips : All the time that the Grecian Princes were ravaging the 
" plains of ill-fated Troy, and assailing her lofty turrets, doomed 
** to fall by hostile fires, I claimed no assistance for that wretch- 
" ed People ; I asked no arms, the production of thy matchless 
" skill; nor could I think, my dearly beloved lu-sband, of em- 
" ploying thee in a fruitless labour, though I both lay under 
" manifold obligations to the family of Priam, and had frequent 
" occasion to shed tears over the perilous exertions of Eneas. 

With conscious joy her conquest she descry 'd ; 
"When, by her charms Bubdu'd, her Lord rcply'd : 

Why all these reasons urged, my mind to move , 
When such your beauties, and so fierce my love ! 
Long since, at your request, my ready care, 
In Troy's fam'd fields had armed your sons for war 
Nor did the high decrees of Jove and Fate 
Doom to so swift a fall the Dardan State. 
But ten years more old Priam might enjoy 
Th' imperial sceptre and the throne of Troy 
Yet, if our Queen is bent the war to wage, 
Her sacred cause shall all our art en : 
The noblest arms our potent skill can frame, 
With breathing bellows or the forming flame, ' 

Or polished steel, refulgent to behold, 
Or mingled metals, damask'd o'er with gold, 
Shall grace the Chief : thy anxious fears give o'er ; 
And doubt thy interest in my love no more. 

He spoke : and ftVd with transport by her charms, 
Clasp'd the fair Goddess in his eager arms j 
Then, pk-s'd, and panting on her bosom lay, 
SunJc in repose, and ail dissolved away. Pitt. 


M Now, by Jove's supreme command, he has landed on the 
" Rutulian shore. In the same state of anxiety, I have now re- 
" course to thee as a suppliant, and implore a protection ever 
" sacred in my eyes. Armour I ask of thee, a mother for a son. 
" The daughter of Nereus, and the spouse of Tithonns, had the 
u art of prevailing on thee, by their tears, to grant a similar fa- 
" vour. Behold what Nations are combined, what cities have 
" shut their gates, and are whetting the sword for the destruc- 
u tion of me and mine. 

" She spake ; and, as he hesitated, she flung her snowy arms 
" around him, and cherished him in her soft embrace : he in- 
" stantly catches the well known flame, and the accustomed fire 
u penetrated his very marrow, and flew like lightning through 
" his melting frame : just as when a fiery stream issues from the 
" bosom of a thundery cloud, and skirts it's edge with tremu- 
" lous light. His fair spouse conscious of beauty's power, joy - 
" fully perceived the influence of her wily charms : and thus 
" the good-natured Parent of Arts, subdued by the irresistible 
M magic of mighty love, replies: Why go so far in quest of ar- 
" guments ? Whither, my Goddess, has thy confidence in me 
u fled ? Hadst thou expressed a similar anxiety before, I would 
" then have fabricated arms for thy favourite Trojans. Nei- 
" ther almighty Jove, nor Fate, forbade Troy to stand, nor Pri- 
" am to survive for ten years more. Now, then, if for war thou 
" art preparing, and if such is thy resolve, whatever my skill 
" can perform I solemnly promise to effect ; whatever can be 
" produced from iron, or liquid mixtures of the finer metals ; as 
" far as the fiery element and the breathing bellows have power 
" to fashion: Cease, by continuing your entreaties, to express 
" a doubt of your empire over me. Having thus spoken he re- 
" turned to the expected caresses, and melted away in the soft 
" bosom of his fair consort, while gentle sleep stole upon every 
il limb." 

Virgil always employs conformities in the midst of contrasts. 

He chuses the night season for introducing Venus to practice 

her bewitching arts on Vulcan, because the power oi Venus is 

test in the night. It was impossible, for me to convey, in a 

2 prose version, all the graces of the: language of die God- 

of Beauty. There is in her diction a delightful mixture of 


elegance, of negligence, of address, and of timidity. I shall 
confine myself to only a few strokes of her character, which ap- 
pear to me capable of being most easily hit. At first, she lays 
great stress on the obligations which she was under to Priam's 
family. The chief, and I believe the only one, was the apple 
adjudged in her favour by Paris, one of the sons of Priam, in 
prejudice of Juno and Minerva. But that apple, which had de- 
clared her the most beautiful of the three, and which had more- 
over humbled her rivals, was every thing to Venus: she ac- 
cordingly calls it Plurima, and extends her gratitude on that ac- 
count not to Paris only, but to all the sons of Priam : 

Quamvis et Priami deberem plurima natis. , 

As to Eneas, her son by Anchises, although he be here the 
grand object of her enterprize, she speaks only of the tears 
which she had shed over his calamities, and even these she dis- 
patches in a single line. She names him only once, and in the 
verse following describes him with so much ambiguity, that 
what she Bays of Eneas might be referred to Priam, so fearful 
is she of repeating the name of the son of Anchises in presence 
of her husband! As to Vulcan, she flatters him, supplicates, im- 
plores, wheedles him. She calls his skill, " her sacred protec- 
44 tion :" sanctum numen. But when she comes to her great 
point, the armour for Eneas, she expresses herself literally in 
four words ; " Arms I beg ; a mother for a son ;" Arma rogo : 
genetrix nato. She does not say, " For her son ;" but conveys 
her meaning in general terms, to avoid explanations of a nature 
too particular. As the ground was slippery, she supports her- 
self by the example of two faithful wives, that of Thetis and Au- 
rora, who had obtained from Vulcan armour for their sons ; the 
first for Achilles, the second for Mcmnon. The children of these 
Goddesses were indeed legitimate, but they were mortal like 
Eneas, which was sufficient for the moment. She next attempts 
to alarm her husband for her own personal safety. She sug- 
gests that she stood exposed to incredible danger. " Combined 
" Nations,'" says she, " and forbid able cities whet the sword 
" against me." Vulcan is staggered, yet still hesitates ; she 
fixes his determination by a master-stroke ; she folds him in 
her beautiful arms, and caresses him, T,rt who can render the 


force of: Cunctantem amplexu molli fovet....sensit lata dolis.... 
and above all, formcc conscia, which defies all the powers of 

Vulcan's reply presents perfect adaptations to the situation 
into which he had been thrown by the caresses of Venus. 

Virgil gives him, first, the title of Father : 

Turn Pater xtcrno fatur devictus amorc. 

I have translated the word Pater, " Father of Arts," but 
improperly. That epithet belongs more justly to Apollo than to 
Vulcan : it here imports the good Vulcan. Virgil frequently 
employs the word, father, as synonimous with good. He often 
applies it to Eneas, and to Jupiter himself: Pater Eneas, Pater 
omnipotens. The principal character of a father being goodness, 
he qualifies, by this name, his hero, and the Sovereign of the 
Gods. The word, father, in this passage, signifies, in the 
most literal sense of the words, good man ; for Vulcan speaks 
and acts with singular goodness of disposition. But the word, 
lather, taken apart, is not sufficiently dignified in our language, 
in which it conveys the same meaning, in a trivial manner. The 
commonalty address it, in familiar discourse, to old men, 
to good-natured persons. 

Some commentators have observed, that in these words . 

Fiducift cessit quo libi Diva mei, 

there is an inversion of grammatical construction ; and the) 
have thought proper to ascribe this to a poetical license. They 
have not perceived that the irregularity of Vulcan's diction pro- 
ceeds from the disorder of his head ; and that Virgil represents 
him not only as transgressing against the rules of grammar, but 
trespassing against the laws even of common sense, in making 
him say, that had Venus expressed a similar anxiety before, it 
would have been in his power to fabricate armour for the Tro- 
jans ; that Jupiter, and the Fates did not forbid Troy to stand, 
nor Priam to reign ten years longer : 

Similia 4i cura Puisset , 
l*i i nt quoque fas nobis Teucros armarc ftussel ; 
Nee Pater omnipotens Trojara, nee Pata vetsbanl 
Stare, decemque alios Prianuui per annos 


It was decidedly clear that Fate had destined Troy to fall 
in the eleventh year of the siege, and that this irrevocable 
decree had been declared by many oracles and prognostics ; 
among others, by the presage of a serpent which devoured ten 
little birds in the nest, with their mother. There is in Vulcan's 
discourse a great deal of swaggering, to say no worse of it, for 
he insinuates, that there were arms which he could have made, 
in complaisance to Venus, capable of counteracting the course of 
Fate, and the will of Jupiter himself, to whom he gives the 
epithet of omnipotent by way of defiance. Observe iY.rther, by 
the way, the rhyme of these two verses, in which the same 
word is twice repeated successively without any apparent ne- 

si cura fuis- 
arm are fuisset. 

Vulcan, intoxicated with love, knows neither what he says 
nor what he does. He is completely deranged in his expres- 
sion, in his thoughts, and in his actions, for he forms the. reso- 
lution of fabricating magnificent armour for the illegitimate son 
of his faithless spouse. It is true he avoids naming him. She 
has pronounced his name but once, out of discretion ; and he 
suppresses it altogether out of jealousy. To Venus alone the 
service is to be rendered. It appears as if he believed she was 
going personally to engage in combat : " If for war thou art 
w preparing," says he to her, " and if such is thy resolve :" 

Si bellarc paras, atque hxc tibi mens eft. 

The total disorder of his frame terminates that of his ad- 
dress. Heated with the fire of love in the arms of Venus, he 
dissolves like metal in the furnace : 

Conjugis inftisus gremio. 

Remark the accuracy of that metaphorical consonance, infu- 
szcs y " dissolved," so perfectly adapted to the God of the forges 
of Lemnos. At length, he becomes completely insensible. 

....placidumque pctivit 
icr membra soporem. 


tor means a great deal more than sleep. It farther pre- 
a consonance of the state of metals after their fusion, a 
total stagnation. 

But in orddr to weaken the effect of what is licentious in this 
picture, and inconsistent with conjugal manners, the sage Vir- 
gil opposes immediately after to the Goddess of voluptuous- 
ness, requesting of her husband armour for her natural son, a 
matron chaste and poor, employed in the arts of Minerva to 
rear her young ones ; and he applies that affecting image to the 
self-same hours of the night, in the view of presenting a new 
contrast, of the different uses which vice and virtue make of 
the same time. 

fade ubi prima quics medio jam noctis abactae 
Curriculo expulcrat somnum ; cum fbemina, primum 
Cui tolerare colo vitam tcnuiquo Minerva 
Jmpositum cinercm ct sopitos susciut igncs, 
Noctem addens operi, famulasquc ad lumina longo 
Ezercet penso ; castum ut servarc cubile 
Con jug-is, ct possit parvos educere natos. 

JEneid, B. viii. L. 407— 41;";. 

*' At the hour which terminates the first sleep, when the cai 
u of Night had as yet performed but half it's course ; that sea- 
u son when first the careful housewife, accustomed lo earn her 
" living by the labours of the distaff and the feeble industry of 
** the arts of Minerva, blows away the gathered ashes, and rou- 
" ses up the slumbering flame, making night itself contribute to 
" her thrift, and inures her maidens to lengthened tasks by a 
" glimmering light ; to save herself from the temptation of in- 
" fidelity to her husband's bed, and to supply the means of 
« rearing her tender offspring. - " 

' But rose refresh'd impatient, from the bed, 
When naif the silent hours of night were fled 
What time the poor, laborious, frugal dame. 
\\ ho plies the distaff, stirs the dying flame ; 
Employs her handmaids by the winking light, 
And lengthens out their task with half the ni 
Ihua to her children she divides the broad, 
And g\U f homely bed. 


Virgil goes on to deduce new and sublime contrasts from the 
humble occupations of this virtuous matron. He opposes, in 
close succession, to her feeble industry, tenia. Minerva, the in- 
genious Vulcan to her dying embers which she rekindles, sopitos 
ignes, the continually naming crater of a volcano ; to her mai- 
dens, among whom she distributes balls of wool, longo exercet 
fenso, the tremendous Cyclops forging a thunder-bolt for Jupi- 
ter, a car for Mars, an aegis for Minerva, and who, at the com- 
mand of their master, interrupt their celestial engagements to 
undertake a suit of armour for Eneas, on the buckler of which 
were to be engraved the principal events of the Roman History. 

* Haud secus Ignipotens, nee tempore segnior illo. 
Molibus e stratis opera ad fabrilia surgit. 
Insula Sicanium juxta latus iEoliamquc 
Brigitur Liparen, fumantibus ardua saxis : 
Quam subtcr specus et Cyclopum exesa caminis 
Antra iEtnea tonant : validique incudibus ictus 
Auditi referunt gemitum, striduntque cavernis 
Stricturx Chalybum, ct fornacibus ignis anhelat 
Yulcani domus, et Vulcani nomine tellus, 
Hue tunc Ignipotens coelo descendit ab alto. 
Ferruni excrcebant vasto Cyclopes in antro, 
ISrontesque, Steropesque et nudus membra Pyracmon 
His informatum manibus, jam parte polita, 
I'ulmen erat, toto Genitor que plurima coelo 
Dejicit in terras ; pars imperfecta manebat. 
Tres imbris torti radios, trcs nubis aquosac 
Addiderant : rutili tres ignis, et alitis Austri. 
Fulgores nunc ternficos, sonitumque, metumquc 
Miscebant operi, flammisque sequaeibus iras. 
Parte alia Marti currumque rotasque volucres 
Instabant, quibus ille viros, quibus excitat urbes 
JEgidaque horrificam, turbatac Palladis arma 
Certatim squamis serpentum auroque polibant 
Connexosque angues, ipsamque in pectore diva 
Gorgona, desecto vertcntem lumina collo 

So to his task, before the dawn, retires 
From soft repose, the father of the fires 
Amid th' Hesperian and Sicilian flood 
All black with smoke, a rocky island stood, 
The dark "Vulcanian land, the region of the God > 

Here the grim Cyclops ply, in vaults profound. 
The huge JEolian forge thjat thunders r< 



Tollite cuncta, inquit, cceptosque aufcilelaborcs, 
JFtnei Cyclopes, et hue advertite mentem. 
Arma acri facienda viro : nunc viribus usus, 
Nunc manibus rapidis, omni nunc arte magistra : 
Precipitate moras Nee plura efiatus : at illi 
Ocius incubuere omncs, pariterque laboreni 
Sortiti : Fiuit aes rivig, aurique metallum : 
Vulnificusque chalybs vasta fornace liquescit. 
Ingentem clypeum informant, unum omnia contra 
Tela Latinorum : septenosque orbibus orbes 
Impediunl : alii ventosis follibus auras 
Accipiunt, redduntque : alii stridentia tingunt 
iEra lacu : gemit impositis incudibus antrum. 
Illi inter sese multa vi brachia tollunt 
In numerum, versantque tenaci forcipe massam. 

iENEiD, B. viii. L. 447 — 45'3 

Th' eternal anvils ring the dungeon o'er ; 

From side to side the fiery caverns roar. 

Loud groans the mass beneath their pond'rous blows, 

Fierce burns the flame, and the full furnace glows. 

To this dark region, from the bright abode, 

With 6peed impetuous flew the Aery G id. 

Th' alternate blows the brawny brethren deal ; 

Thick burst the sparkles from the tortur'd steel. 

Huge strokes rough Steropes and Brontes gave, 

And strong Pyracmon shook the gloomy cave : 

Before their Sovereign came, the Cyclops strove 

With eager speed, to forge a bolt for Jove. 

Such as by Heaven's almighty Lord are hurl'd, 

All charged with vengeance, on a guihy World 

Beneath their hands tremendous to survey ! 

Half rought, half form'd, the dreadful engine lay : 

Three points of rain ; three forks of hail conspire ; 

Three arm'd with wind ; and three were bar'd with fire 

The mass they temperM thick with livid rays, 

Fear, Wrath, and Terror, and the lightnings blaze. 

With equal speed a second train prepare 

The rapid chariot for the God of War ; 

The thund'ring wheels and axles, that excite 

The madding nations to the rage of fight. 

Some, in a fringe, the burnish'd serpents roll'd 

Round the dread argis, bright with scales of gold j 

The horrid a:gis, great Minerva's shield, 

A\ hell, in her wrath, she takes the fatal field. 

All cliarg'd with curling snakes the boss they Pi 

And the grim Gorgon's head tremendous blaz'd 

Vol. III. T 


" Not less vigilant, nor less disposed to industry, at that 
" early hour the God who rules the fire uprose from his soft 
" couch, and addressed himself to his plastic labours. 

" Not far from the Sicilian shore and JEoYian Lipari, an 
" island arises out of the deep, forming a huge mass of lofty 
" and ever-smoaking rocks : in the burning entrails of which, a 
" spacious cavern and the fire-consumed iEtnean vaults inces- 
u santly thunder with the sultry labours of the Cyclopian bro- 
" thers : the anvels reverberate the thumping of their sturdy 
" strokes : the hammering of flaming steel resounds from cave 
" to cave, while streams of fire ascend from the foaming furna- 
" ces : such is the dread domain of Vulcan, and from his name 
" the island has obtained the appellation of Vulcania. Hither it 
" was that the fiery God, from the heights of Olympus, now re- 
" paired. 

" The Cyclops there he found plying their irony labours in 
" the capacious cavern, Brontes and Steropes, and the naked- 
" limbed Pyracmon. They had in hand a dread thunderbolt, 
" one of those which father Jove so frequently hurls from flam- 
" ing Heaven upon the Earth : it was as yet but half reduced to 
" form, partly polished, and partly in a rude imperfect state. 

In agonizing pains the monster frown'd, 
And roll'cl in death her fiery eyes around. 

Throw, throw your tasks aside, the Sovereign said ; 
Arms for a godlike Hero must be made. 
Fly to the work before the dawn of day ; 
Your speed, your strength/and all your skill display. 

Swift as i he word (his orders to pursue,) 
To the black labours of the forge they flew ; 
Vast heaps of steel in the deep furnace roll'd, 
And bubbling streams of brass, and floods of melted gold 

The brethren first a glorious shield prepare, 
Capacious of the whole Rutulian war. 
Some, orb in orb, the blazing buckler frame ; 
Some with huge bellows rouze the roaring flame ; 
S;une in the stream the hissing metals drown'd, -j 

From vauk to vault the thund'ring strokes rebound, C 
And the deep cave rebellows to the sound. J 

Exact in time each pondero is hammer plays ; -. 

In time their arm the giant brethren raise, ( 

And turn_ the glowing mass a thousand ways. $ 


4 They had blended it in three rays of rain congealed into hail ; 
" three of the watery clpud ; three of ruddy fire, and three of 
" the winged South-wind. They were now infusing into the 
" composition the terrific flash, and noise, and dismay, and an- 
" ger mingling with the rapid flame. In another forge, they 
"were adently finishing a warlike car, and swift-flying wheels 
" for Mars, in which he rouses hostile armies and cities to the 
" fierce combat. Others were employed in burnishing, with 
" emulous skill, a horrific aegis, the armour of Pal/as when 
" moved to vengeance, with scaly serpents wrought in gold : 
" exhibiting the intertwisted snakes and the dire head of the 
" Gorgon herself, a covering for the breast of the Goddess, cut 
" off by the neck, and rolling about her deadly eyes. 

" Children of iEtna, says he, Cyclopian brothers, desist ; re- 
" move these unfinished labours out of the way, and attend to 
" what I am going to give in charge. We have to fabricate 
" armour for a redoubted mortal : now exert your utmost 
" strength, now ply your busy hands, now call forth all your 
" masterly skill : let not a single instant be lost. He said no 
" more : they all, with the quickness of thought engaged in the 
a work, and assign to each his share in the mighty task by lot. 
" The golden and the brazen metals flow in rivulets ; and the 
" death-fraught steel dissolves in the enormous furnace. The 
" vast and ponderous shield they fashion, itself alone a bulwark 
" against all the weapons of the Latins ; a seven fold texture of 
" impenetrable orb upon orb. Some draw in and expel the air 
u with the breathing bellows ; some temper the hissing brass in 
" the cooling surge ; the hollow cave rebellows with the strokes 
" thundering on innumerable anvils. They, in regular time and 
" order, elevate the brawny arm to the lusty blow, and turn 
«* round and round the flaming mass with the tenacious tongs." 

You think you see those gigantic sons of jfitna at work, and 
hear the noise of their ponderous hammers : so imitative is the 
harmony of Virgil's versification. 

The composition of the thunder is well worthy of attention. 
It is replete with genius, that is with observations of Nature 
entirely new. Virgil introduces into it the four elements all at 
once, and places them in contrast; the earth and the water the 
fire and the air. 


Tres imbris torti l'adios, tres nubis aquosac 
Addiderant, rutuli tres ignis, & alitis Austri. 

There is indeed in the composition no earth properly so cal- 
led, but he gives solidity to the water to supply it's place ; tres 
imbris torti radios, literally " three rays of crisped rain," to de- 
note hail. This metaphorical expression is ingenious : it sup- 
poses the Cyclops to have crisped the drops of the rain, in or- 
der to for n them into hail-stones. Remark likewise the ap- 
propriate correspondence of the expression alitis Austri, " the 
" winged Auster." Auster is the Wind of the South, which 
almost always occasions thundery weather in Europe. 

The Poet has afterwards had the boldness to place metaphy- 
sical sensations on the anvil of the Cyclops : metum, " fear ;" 
iras, " wrath." He amalgamates them with the thunder. Thus 
he shakes at once the physical system by the contrast of the 
elements ; and the moral system by the consonance of the soul, 
and the perspective of Deity. 

Flammisque sequacibus iras. 

He sets the thunder a-rolling, and shews Jupiter in the cloud. 

Virgil farther opposes to the head of Pallas, that of Medusa ; 
but this is a contrast in common to him with all the Poets. But 
here is one peculiar to himself. Vulcan commands his Cyclo- 
pian workmen to lay aside their operations designed for the use 
of deities, and to give undivided attention to the armour of a 
mortal. Thus he puts in the same balance, on the one hand the 
thunder of Jupiter, the car of Mars, the aegis and cuirass of 
Pallas ; and on the other the destinies of the Roman Empire, 
which were to be engraven on the buckler of a man. but if 
he gives the preference of this new work, it is wholly out of 
love to Venus, not from any regard to the glory of Eneas. Ob- 
serve, that the jealous God still avoids naming the son of An- 
chises, though he seems here reduced to the necessity of doing 
it. He satisfies himself with saying vaguely to the Cyclops : 
Anna acri facienda viro. The epithet, acer, is susceptible of 
both a favourable and an unfavourable sense. It may import 
keen, wickedly severe, and can hardly with propriety be applied 


to a person of so much sensibility as Eneas, to whom Virgil so 
frequently appropriates the character of the pious. 

Finally, Virgil, after the tumultuous picture of the ^Eolian 
forges, conveys us back, by a new contrast, to the peaceful ha- 
bitation of good King Evander, who is almost as early a riser 
as the good housewife, or as the God of fire. 

* IL-cc pater JEoliis properat dum Lemnius oris, 
Evandrum ex humili tecto lux suscitat alma 

"~Et matutini volucrum sub culmine cantus. 
Consurgit senior, tunicaque inducitur artus, 
Et Tyrrhena pedum i ircumdat vincula plantis : 
Turn latcri atque humcris Tegexum subligat ensem, 
Demissa ab laeva panthers terga retorquens. 
Necnon et g-emini custodes limine ab alto 
Procedunt, gressumque canes comitantur herilcm. 
Hospiiis JEnex sedem et secreta petebat, 

monum memor tt promissi muneris heros. 
Nee minus iFJneas se matutinus ag-ebat. 
Filius huic Pallas, olli comes ibat Achates. 

£xeid, B. viii L. 454 — 466 

" While the Lemnian God was dispatching this weighty bu- 
" siness on the shores of ./Eolia, the genial rays of returning 
" Aurora, and the matin song of the birds under his straw-clad 
" roof, summoned Evander from his lowly bed. The venerable 
" sire arose : he assumes the tunic, fitted to his ancient limbs, 
" and binds the Tuscan sandals upon his feet ; next he fits to 
" his shoulders and side the Arcadian sword ; a panther's hide, 
" thrown carelessly backward, depended over his left arm. Two 

* These cares employ the father of the fires : 
Meantime Evander from his couch retires, 
Call'd by the purple beams of morn away, 
And tuneful birds, that hail'd the dawning- da} , 
First the warm tunic round his limbs he threw : 
Ni \l on his feet the shining sandals drew. 

\ mund his shoulders fiow'd the panthers hide, 
And the bright sword hung glittering at his side 

mighty dogs, domestic at hi.-, board, 
(A faithful guard) attend their aged Lord 
The promis'd aid revolving in his breast, 
The car< ful Monarch sought his godlike g - uest, 
\\ ho with Achat .? rose at dawn of d 
Vucl join'd the King- and Pallas on the way. — Piti 


150 sequel to the studies of nature. 

" faithful guardian dogs leave their station at the threshold, and, 
" well-pleased, attend their master's footsteps. The hero, well 
" recollecting the conversation of the night before, and the aid 
" which he had promised, was bending his course toward the 
" apartment and secret retreat of his respected guest. Eneas 
" too had been up with the dawn : they met ; the one attended 
" by his youthful heir, the other by his confidential friend A- 
" chates." 

Here is a very interesting moral contrast. 
The good King Evander, without any body guards except 
two dogs, v hich likewise served to watch the house, walks 
forth at day-break to converse on business with his guest. And 
do not imagine that under his straw-covered roof mere trifles 
are negotiated. No less a subject is discussed than the re-estab- 
lishment of the Empire of Troy, in the person of Eneas, or ra- 
ther the foundation of the Roman Empire. The point in ques- 
tion is the dissolution of a formidable confederacy of Nations. 
To assist in effecting this, King Evander offers to Eneas a rein- 
forcement of four hundred cavaliers. They are indeed selected, 
and to be commanded by Pallas, his only son. I must here ob- 
serve one of those delicate correspondencies by which Virgil 
conveys important lessons of virtue to Kings, as well as to other 
men, in feigning actions apparently indifferent : I mean the con- 
fidence reposed by Evander in his son. Though this young- 
Prince was as yet but in the blossom of life, his father admits 
him to a conference of the highest importance, as his companion: 
Comes ibat. He had given the name of Pallentium, in honour 
of his son, to the city which he himself had founded. Finally, 
of the four hundred cavaliers whom he promises to the Trojan 
Prince, to be under the command of Pallas, two hundred he 
himself is to select out of the Arcadian youth, and the other 
two hundred are to be furnished by his son in his own name. 

Arcadas huic equites bis centum, robora pubis 
Lccta, dabo ; totidemque suo tibi nomhjc Pallas. 

JExeid, B. viii. L. 518—519. 

" Beneath his standard ranged, a chosen force 
1 send, two hundred brave Arcadian horse ; 
And, to support the gathering' war, my son 
Shall Vad an equal squadron of his own — Pit i 


Instances of paternal confidence are rare among Sovereigns, 
who frequently consider their successors as their enemies. These 
traits strongly depict the candour and the simplicity ol manners 
of the King of Arcadia. 

That good Prince might perhaps be censured for indifference 
about his only son, in removing him from his person, and ex- 
posing him to the dangers of war : but he acts thus for a reason 
diametrically opposite ; his object is to form the young man to 
virtue, by making him serve his first campaigns under a hero 
such as Eneas, 

' Ilunc tibi prxterea, spes et solatia nostri 
Pallanta adjungani. Sub te tolerare magisti-o. 
Militiam, et grave Martis opus, tua cernere facta 
Assucscat -, primis et te miretur ab annis. 

JEneid, B. viii. L. 514 — 517. 

" I will likewise send my son Pallas himself with thee ; Pal- 
u las my hope and my delight. Let him accustom himself to 
u endure the painful toils of war under such a master, form his 
" mind to glory by the sight of thy gallant deeds, and learn to 
" admire thee from his earliest years." 

The important part acted by this young Prince may be seen 
in the sequel of the jEneid. Virgil has extracted many exqui- 
site beauties out of it : such are, among others, the affecting- 
leave which his father takes of him ; the regret expressed by 
the good old man that age permitted him not to accompany his 
son to the field ; after that, the imprudent valour of the young 
man, who forgetting the lesson conveyed by the two bridles of 
Anchises, ventured to attack the formidable Turnus, and receiv- 
ed from his hand the mortal blow ; the high feats in arms per- 
formed by Eneas, to avenge the death of the son of his host and 
ally ; his profound sorrow at sight of the youthful Pallas, cut 
off in the flower of his age, and the very first day that he had 

Ami Id my Pallas by thy side engage, 

Pallas, the joy of my declining 

Beneath so great a master's forming care, 

Let thf dear youth learn every work of war ; 

In every field thy matchless toils admire, 

And emulate thy deeds, and catch the glorious fire. — Pjj ; 


engaged in the fight; finally, the honours conferred on the life- 
less body, when he sent it to the afflicted Father. 

Here it is we may remark one of those touching compari- 
sons,* by which Virgil, in imitation of Homer, diminishes the 
horror of his battle-pieces, and already heightens their effect, by 
establishing in them consonances with beings of another order. 
It is in representing the beauty of the young Pallas, the lustre 
of which death had not yet been able entirely to efface. 

-j- Qualem virgineo demessum pollice florem 
Seu mollis viols, seu languentis hyacinthi ; 

' Those comparisons arc beauiies which seem appropriate to poetry. But 
( think painting might adopt them to advantage, and derive powerful effects 
from them. For example, when a painter is representing on the fore -ground 
of a battle-piece, a young man of an interesting character, killed, and stretch- 
ed along the grass, he might introduce near him some beautiful wild plan), 
analogous to his character, with drooping flowers, and the stalks halfcul 
down. If it were in the picture of a modern battle, he might mutilate, and 
if I may venture on the expression, kill in it, the vegetables of a higher or- 
der, such us a fruit-tree, or even an oak ; for our cannon-bullets commit ra- 
vages of a very different kind in the plains, from those produced by the ar- 
rows and javelins of the Ancients. They plow up the turf of the lulls, mow 
down the forests, cleave asunder the young trees, and tear off huge frag 
ments from the trunks of the most venerable oaks. I do not recollect that 
I ever saw any of these effects represented in pictures of our modern 
battles. They are however very common in the real scenes of war, and re- 
double the impressions of terror which Painters intend to excite by there- 
presentation of such subjects. The desolation of a country has a still more 
powerful expression than groups of the dead, and of the dying. It's groves 
levelled, the black furrows of k's up-town meadows, and it's rocks maimed, 
awfully display the effects of human fury, extending even to the ancient mo- 
numents of Nature. We discern in them the wrath of Kings, which is their 
final argument, and is dy inscribed on their cannon : Ultima ratio 

Regum Nay there mi;. iresscd through the whole extent of a battle- 

piece, the detonations of the discharge of artillery, repeated by the valleys 
to several leagues distance, by representing, in the back grounds, the terri- 
fied shepherds driving off' their charge, flocks of birds flying away toward 
the horizon, and the wild beasts abandoning the woods. 

Physical consonances heighten moral sensations, especially when there i- 
a transition from cv.e kingdom of Nature to another. 

j There like a flower he lay, with beauty crown'd, 
Pluck'd by some lovely virgin from the ground : 


Cui neque fulgor adhuc, nee dum sua forma rcccssit : 
Non jam mater alittellus, viresque ministrat. 

, iu, B. -\i. L. 68— 71. 

" Like a tender violet or languishing hyacinth, cropped by 
u the fingers of a virgin ; which have not yet lost their beauty 
" and their radiance ; but their parent Earth sustains them no 
" more, no more supplies them with nourishment." 

Mark another consonance with the death of Pallas. In or- 
der to express the idea that these flowers have not suffered in 
being separated from the parent stem, Virgil represents them 
as gathered by a young maiden : Virgineo demessum pollice ; 
literally, "reaped by a virgin finger," and from that gentle 
image there results a terrible contrast with the javelin of Tur- 
nus, which had nailed the buckler of Pallas to his breast, and 
killed him by a single blow. 

Finally, Virgil, after having represented the grief of Evander 
on beholding the dead body of his son, and the despair of that 
unhappy father imploring the vengeance of Eneas, derives from 
the very death of Pallas the termination of the war, and the close 
of the iEneid ; for Taurus overcome in single combat by Eneas, 
resigns to him the victory, the empire, the Princess Lavinia, 
and supplicates him to rest satisfied with sacrifices so ample ; 
but the Trojan hero, on the point of granting him his life, per- 
ceiving the belt of Pallas, which Turnus had assumed, after 
having slain that young Prince, plunges his sword into his body, 
as he pronounces these words : 

Pallas tc hoc vulnere, Pallas 
Immolat, et pocnam scelerato ex sanguine sumit.* 

•, 15. xii. L. 948— 949. 

u It is Pallas, Pallas, who by this blow exacts atonement, and 
" takes vengeance on thy criminal blood." 

The root no more the mother earth supplies, 

Vet .still ih' unladed colour charms the c Pn T. 

Tis Pallat, Pallas, gives the fatal blow. 

Thus is his ghost aton'd. Pitt. 

Vol. III. V 


Thus it is that the Arcadians have exercised an influence, in 
every possible respect, over the historical monuments, the reli- 
gious traditions, the earliest wars, and the political origin of the 
Roman Empire, 

It is evident that the age in which I exhibit the Arcadians is 
by no means an age of fiction. I collected therefore, respect- 
ing them and their country, the delicious images which the Po- 
ets have transmitted to us of these, together with the most au- 
thentic traditions of Historians, which I found in great num- 
bers in the Voyage of Pausanias into Greece, in the Works of 
Plutarch, and the Retreat of the ten thousand by Xenophon ; so 
that I collected, on the subject of Arcadia, all that Nature pre- 
sents most lovely in our climates, and History most probable in 

While I was engaged in those agreeable researches, I had 
the good fortune to form a- personal acquaintance with John 
"James Rousseau. We very frequently went out a walking, in 
the Summer-time, in every direction round Paris. I derived 
inexpressible satisfaction from his society. He had nothing of 
the Canity of most literary characters, who are continually dis- 
posed to draw the attention of other men to their ideas j and 
still less that of the men of the World, who imagine that a man 
of letters is good for nothing but to relieve their languor by 
prattling to them. He took his share of both the benefit and 
the burthen of conversation, talking in his turn, and attentively 
listening when others talked. Nay he left to those with whom 
he associated, the subject of the conversation, regulating him- 
self according to their standard, with so little arrogance of pre- 
tension, that among those who did not know him, persons of 
moderate discernment took him for an ordinary man, and those 
who assumed the lead considered him as much inferior to them- 
selves ; for with them he spoke very little, or on very few sub- 
jects. He has been sometimes accused of pride on that account, 
by men of the fashionable world, who impute their own vices to 
persons who have not the advantage of fortune, but who pos- 
sess an independent spirit that scorns to bend the neck to their 
yoke. But among many other anecdotes which I could produce, 
in support of what I just now said, namely, that simple people 


took him for an ordinary man, here is one which must convince 
the Reader of his habitual modesty. 

The very day that he went to look for a dinner with the her- 
mits of Mount Valerian, as I have formerly related in a note ; 
on our return to Paris in the evening, we were caught in a 
shower, not far from the Eois de Bologne, opposite to the Gate 
Maillot. We went in to take shelter under the great Chesnut- 
trees, which had now begun to put out leaves ; for it was during 
the Easter-hollidays. Under those trees we found a great deal 
of company, who like ourselves had crouded thither for covert. 
One of the Swiss's lads having perceived John-James, came 
running up to him in a transport of joy, and thus accosted him : 
" How now, my good man, whence do you come ? It is an age 
" since we have had the pleasure of seeing you!" Rousseau mild- 
ly replied : " My wife has had a long fit of illness, and I myself 
" have been considerably out of order." " Oh ! my poor good 
" man," replied the lad, " you are not comfortable here : come, 
" come ; I will find you a place within doors." 

In fact he exerted himself so zealously, that he procured us 
an apartment above stairs, where, notwithstanding the crowd, 
he contrived to accommodate us with chairs, a table, and some 
bread and wine. While he was shewing us the way, I said to 
John- James : " This young man seems to be very familiar with 
" you ; surely he does not know who you are ?" " Oh ! yes," 
replied he, " we have been acquainted these several years. My 
" wife and I used frequently to come hither in fine weather, 
" to eat a cutlet of an evening." 

The appellation of " good man," so frankly bestowed on him 
by the tavern-boy, who had undoubtedly long mistaken John- 
James for some honest mechanic ; the joy which he expressed 
at seeing him again, and the zeal with which he served him, 
conveyed to me completely an idea of the good nature which 
the sublime Author of Emilius displayed in his most trivial 

So far from seeking to shine in the eyes of an}' one whatever, 
he himself acknowledged, with a sentiment of humility not of- 
twn to be found, and in my opinion altogether unfounded, that 
he was not fit to take part in conversation of a superior st 
" The least appearance of argument," said he to me one day, 


" is sufficient to overset me. My understanding comes to my 
" assistance half an hour later than to other men. I know what 
" the reply ought to be precisely v\ hen it is out of time." 

That tardiness of reflection did not proceed from a maxillary 
depression, as is alleged in the " Prospectus of a new Edition 
" of the Works of John-James" by a Writer in other respects 
highly estimable ; but from his strong sense of natural equity, 
which permitted him not to give a decision on the most trifling- 
subject till he had examined it ; it proceeded from his genius, 
which turned it round and round to get a view of it in every di- 
rection ; and finally, from his modesty, which repressed in him 
the theatrical tone, and the oracular sententiousness*' of our con- 

x These arc the personal reasons which he might have for talking sparingly 
in company : but I have no doubt that he had others much more weighty, 
arising from the character of our Societies themselves. I find those general 
reasons so happily detailed in the excellent Chapter oi' Jllontuignc's Essays, On 
\rt of Conversation, that I cannot repress my inclination to insert a short 
extract from it, in hope that the Header may be induced to peruse the whole 

" As the mind acquires new vigour from communication with vigorous and 
" and well-regulated minds, it is impossible to express how much it loses and 
" degenerates by the continual commerce and intimacy of grovelling and 
" puny characters. There is no contagion that spreads so rapidly as this, 
" I have paid very dear for my experience on this subject. I am fond of ar- 
" guing, and of discussion ; but with few men, and in my own way : for to 
" serve as a show to the Great, and to make an emulous parade of wit and 
" prattle, 1 consider as a most degrading employment for a man of honour." 

So much for the active conversation of a gentleman among men of the 
World, and now, a few pages farther down, for the passive conversation. 

" The gravity, the robe, and the fortune of the person who speaks, frequcnt- 
" ly give currency to insipid and trifling tittle-tattle. It is presumable that 
" a Gentleman so followed, so awful, must possess within himself a find very 
" superior to one of the herd ; and that a person entrusted with so many era- 
" ployments and commissions of importance, so disdainful and so self-suffi- 
" cient, must possess much greater ability than that other who salutes him 
" at such a respectful distance, and whom no one employs. Not only the 
" words, but the very grimaces of those consequential personages, attract 
" consideration, and turn to account, every one vying with another to put 
" some flattering and significant gloss upon them. If they let themselves 
'■ down so far as to converse with ordinary men, and meet with any thing 
" from them except approbation and reverence, you are sure to be levelled to 
" the dust by the authority of their experience. They have heard, they have 
" seen, they have done : you are quite overwhelmed by an accumulation of 


vcrsations. He was in the midst of a company of wits, with his 
simplicity, what a young girl in the glow of natural colours is 
amidst women who put on artificial red and white. Still less 

What then would Montaigne have said, in an age when so many of the Lit- 
gine themselves to he Great ; when every one has two, three, four titles 
himself off; when those who have none, entrench themselves under the 
patronage of those who have ? The greater part in truth begin with placing 
themselves on the knees of a man who is making a noise ; but they never rest 
till they get upon his shoulders. I do not speak of those self-important gen- 
tlemen, who taking possession of an Author that they may put on the air of 
serving him, interpose themselves between him and the sources of public fa- 
vour, in order to reduce him to a particular dependance on them, and who be- 
liis declared enemies, if he has the spirit to reject the infelicity of be- 
ing protected by them. The happy Montaigne had no need of fortune. But 
what would he have said of those unfeeling fellows, so common in all ranks, 
who, to get rid of their lethargy, court the acquaintance of a writer of repu- 
tation, and wait in silence for his letting off at every turn sentences newly 
I, or sallies of wit ; who have not so much as the sense to take them in, 
nor the faculty of retaining them, unless they arc delivered in an imposing 
tone, or puffed off in tiie columns of a Journal ; and who, in a word, if by 
chance they happen to be struck, have frequently the malignity to affix to 
them an indifferent or a dangerous meaning, in order to lower a reputation 
which give 8 them umbrage. Assuredly, had Montaigne himself appeared in 
our circles as nothing more than plain Michael, notwithstanding his exquisite 
judgment, an eloquence so natural, erudition so vast, and which he under- 
stood so happily to apply, he would have found himself every where reduced 
to silence, like John-James. I have been somewhat diffuse on this chapter, 
in honour of the two Authors, of Emilius, and of the Essays. They have 
both been accused of reserve, and of making no great figure in conversation ; 
and likewise of being both egotists in their writings, but with very little 
justice on either score. It is Man whom they arc ever describing in their 
own person : and T always find that when they talk of themselves, they talk 
likewise of me. 

To return to John-James „• he was most sincere in denying himself to the 
gratification of vanity ; he referred his reputation not to his person, but to 
certain natural truths diffused over his writings ; but in other respects set- 
ting no extraordinary value on himself. I told him, one day, that a young 
lady had said to me, she would think herself happy in attending him as his 

." replied he, " in order to hear me talk six or seven 
" on the subject of the Emilius." 1 have oftencr than once taken the "liberty 
ome of his opinions ; so far from being offended, he with pleasure 
acknowledged his mistake the moment that be was made sensible of it. 

Of this 1 beg leave to quo nee, which reflects some credit on my- 

though it may savour of vanity ; but, in sincerity, my sole intention in 
producing it is to vindicate his character from that charge. Wherefon 
1 to him, once that the subject happened to come in the way, liav.? • 

JjS SEQUEL to the studies of nature. 

would he have submitted himself as a spectacle among the Great ; 
but in a tete-a-tete, in the freedom of intimacy, and on subjects 
which were familiar to him, those especially in which the hap- 

your Emilias, represented the serpent in Poussin's Deluge as the principal 
object of that Painting' ? It is not so, but Ihe infant, which it's mother is 
straining to place on a rock. He meditated for a moment, and said to me : 
" Yes — yes, you are in the rig-lit : I was mistaken. It is the child ; undoubt- 
" edly, it is the child ;" and he appeared to be perfectly overjoyed that I had 
suggested the remark. But he stood in no need of my superficial observa- 
tions, to bring- him to the acknowledgement of the little slips which had es- 
caped him. He said to me one day : " Were I to undertake a new Edition 
" of my Works, I would certainly "soften what I have written on the subject 
" of Physicians. There is no one profession which requires so much close 
" study and application as theirs. In all Countries they are really the men 
" of the most cultivated understanding." Upon another occasion he said to 
me : " I mingled in my quarrel with Mr. Hume too strong an infusion of spleen. 
" But the dull climate of England, the state of my fortune, and the pcrsecu- 
" tions which I had just bed' enduring in France, all contributed to plunge me 
" into melancholy." He has said to me oftener than once, " I am fond of 
-'celebrity; I acknowledge it: but," added he, with a sigh, "God has 
" punished me in the point where I had offended." 

At the same time, persons of high respectability have censured him for 
acknowledging so much evil of himself in his Confessions. What would they 
have said then, if, like so many others, he had in these indirectly pronounced 
his own elogium ? The more humiliating that the failings are of which he 
there accuses himself, the more sublime is his candor in exposing them. 
There are, it must be admitted, some passages in which he is chargeable 
with indiscretion in speaking out too plainly, where another person is con- 
cerned ; particularly where he discloses the not over-delicate attachments of 
his inconstant benefactress, Madame de Warens : But I have reason to be- 
lieve that his posthumous Works have been falsified in more than one place. 
It is possible that he did not name her in his manuscript ; and if he did men- 
tion her by name, he thought he might do this without hurting any one, be- 
cause she left no posterity. Besides, he speaks of her every where with a 
warmth of interest. He uniformly fixes the attention of the Reader, in the 
midst of her irregularities, on the qualities of her mind. In a word, he con- 
sidered it as his duty to tell the good and the bad of the personages of his 
History, after the example of the most celebrated Historians of Antiquity 
Tacitus says expressly, in the opening of his History, Book first, "I have no 
" reason either to love or to hate Otho, Galba, or It is true I owe 

" my fortune to Vespasian, as I owe the progress and preservation of it to his 
" children ; but when a man is going to write History he ought to forget 
' ; benefits as well as injuries." In truth, Tacitus taxes Vespasian his 
factor with avarice, and other faults. John-James, who had assumed for his 


piness of Mankind was interested, his soul soared aloft, his sen- 
timents became impressive, his ideas profound, his images sub- 
lime, and his spoken as ardent as his written expression. 

Hut what I prized still more highly than even his genius was 
his probity. He was one of the few literary characters, tried 
in the furnace of affliction, to whom you might with perfect se- 
curity communicate your most secret thoughts. You had no- 
thing to fear from his malignity, if he deemed them to be wrong, 
nor from his perfidy, if they appeared to him to be right. 

One afternoon, then, that we were enjoying our repose in 
the Bois de Boulogne, I led the conversation to a subject which 
I have had much at heart ever since I came to the use of rea- 
son. We had just been speaking of Plutarch's lives of eminent 
men, of Amyot's Translation, a Work which he very highly 
prized, in which he had been taught to read when a child, and 
which, if I am not mistaken, has been the germ of his elo- 
quence, and of his antique virtues ; so much influence does the 
first education exercise over the rest of life ! I said to him 
then : 

I could have wished very much to see a History of your 

♦self as much on liis love for truth in writing his own History, as Tacitus did 
in writing that of the Roman Emperors. 

Not that I by any means approve the unreserved frankness of John- J times, 
in a slate of Society like that in which we live, and that I have not reason to 
complain besides of the inequality of his temper, of inconclusivcness in his 
Writings, and of some errors in conduct, as he himself has, published these 
for the purpose of condemning them. But u here is the man, where is the 
Writer, where is especially the unfortunate \uthor, who has no fault to re- 
proach himself with ? Jo/ui-Jumes has discussed questions so susceptible oj 
being argued on either side ; he was conscious oi' > :.t once a mind 

so great, and of being subjected to a i ■ deplorable ; he had to en 

counter wants so pressing, and friends so perfidious, that he was frequently 
Forced out of the common road. licit even when he deviates, and beconv 
victim of others, or of himself, you see him forever forgetting his own mise- 
ries, that he maj devote his undivided attention to those of -Mankind. He is 
uniformly the defender of their rights, and the advocate of the miserable 
There might be inscribed on his tomb cting words from a Book on 

which he pronounces an elogium so sublime, ich he earned always 

about him some S< .ears of his life; His Sin! 



jf. J. " I once felt a powerful propensity to write that of Cos- 
" mo de Medicis.* He was a simple individual, who became the 
•' sovereign of his fellow-citizens by rendering them more hap- 
" py. He raised and maintained his superiority merely by the 
" benefits which he conferred. I had made a rough sketch of 
" that subject : but I have relinquished it : I possess not the 
" talents requisite to the composition of History." 

Why have not you yourself, with all your ardent zeal for the 
happiness of Mankind, made some attempt to form a happy Re- 
public ? I know a great many men of all Countries, and of every 
condition, who would have followed you. 

" Oh ! I have had too much experience of Mankind !" Then 
looking at me, after a moment's silence, he added, with an air 
of some displeasure : " I have several times entreated you never 
" to introduce that subject." 

But wherefore might you not have formed, with an assemblage 
of Europeans destitute of fortune, and of a Country, in some 
uninhabited island of the South-Sea, an establishment similar to 
that which William Penn founded in North- America, in the 
midst of Savages ? 

" What a difference between the age in which he lived, and 
" ours ! In PenrHs time, there was a religious belief ; now-a- 
" days men no longer believe in any thing." Then, softening his 
tone : " I should have liked very well to live in a society such 

* Here is the decision pronounced upon him by Philip de Commines, the 
Plutarch of his age in respect of native felicity. 

" Cosmo de Medicis, who was the chief of that house, and indeed founded 
" it, a man worthy of being named among the greatest of the Great, especial- 
" lv when his condition in life is taken into the account, namely that of a 
" merchant, has conveyed his name to a family the most illustrious, I think, 
■'" that ever was in the World. For their very servants, under the sanction 
" of that name of Medicis, possessed so much credit, that I should hardly be 
" believed, were I to relate the instances which I have seen of it in France, 

" and in England I knew one of their servants, Gerard Quannese by name, 

« who was almost the only instrument of supporting King Edward IV. on the 
** throne of England, during the Civil Wars of that Kingdom." And a little 
lower : " The authority of his predecessors was injurious to this Peter de 
' Medicis, in as much as that of Cosmo, who had been the founder of the Fa- 
" mily, was gentle and amiable, and such as was necessary to a city possessed 
•• of liberty-' fBook 


" as I figure it to myself, in the capacity of a private member ; 
" but on no consideration whatever would I have undertaken 
" any charge ; least of all that of ruler in chief. It is long since 
" I became sensible of my own incapacity : I was unfit for the 
u smallest employment." 

You would have found persons in abundance disposed to ex- 
ecute your ideas. 

" Oh ! I beseech you, let us call another subject." 
I have some thoughts of writing the History of the Nations 
of Arcadia. They are not indolent shepherds like those of the 

His features softened into a smile. " Talking," says he to 
me, " of the shepherds of the Lignon, I once undertook a jour- 
" ney to Forez, for the express purpose of viewing the country 
M of Caledon and Astrea, of which Urfeius has presented us 
" with pictures so enchanting. Instead of amorous shepherds, 
" I saw, along the banks of the Lignon, nothing but smiths, 
" founders, and iron-mongers." 
How ! in a country so delightful ! 

" It is a country merely of forges. It was this journey to Fo- 
" rez which dissolved my illusion. Till then, never a year pas- 
" sed that I did not read the Astrea from end to end : I had 
" become quite familiarized with all the personages of it. Thus 
" Science robs us of our pleasmes." 

Oh ! my Arcadians have no manner of resemblance to vour 
blacksmiths, nor to the ideal shepherds of Urfeius, v;\\o passed 
the days and nights in no other occupation but that of making 
love, exposed internally to all the pernicious consequences of 
idleness, and from without to the invasions of surrounding Na- 
tions. Mine practise all the arts of rural life. There are among 
them shepherds, husbandmen, fishermen, vine-dressers. They 
have availed themselves of all the sites of their country, diver- 
sified as it is with mountains, plains, lakes and rocks. Their 
manners arc patriarchal, as in the early ages of the World. 
There are in this Republic, no priests, no soldiers, no slaves ; 
for they are so religious, that every Head of a family is the pon- 
tiff of it ; so warlike, that every individual i . is at all 
times prepared to take up arms in defence of his Country, with- 
out the inducement of pay ; and in such a state of equality, there 
Vol. Ill X 


are not so much as domestic servants among them. The chil- 
dren are there brought up in the habit of serving their parents. 

The utmost care is taken to avoid inspiring them, under the 
name of emulation, with the poison of ambition, and no such 
lesson is taught as that of surpassing each other ; but, on the 
contrary, they are inured betimes to prevent one another, by 
good offices of every kind ; to obey their parents ; to prefer 
their father, their mother, a friend, a mistress, to themselves j 
and their Country to every thing. In this state of Society there 
is no quarrelling among the young people, unless it be some 
disputes among lovers, like those of the Devin du Village. But 
virtue there frequently convokes the citizens to national assem- 
blies, to concert together measures conducive to the general 
welfare. They elect, by a plurality of voices, their Magistrates, 
who govern the State as if it were one family, being entrusted 
at once with the functions of peace, of war, and of religion. 
From their union such a force results, that they have ever been 
enabled to repel all the Powers who presumed to encroach on 
their liberties. 

No useless, insolent, disgustful, or terrifying monument, is 
to be seen in their Country ; no colonnades, triumphal arches, 
hospitals, or prisons ; no frightful gibbets on the hills as you 
enter their towns : but a bridge over a torrent, a well in the 
midst of an arid plain, a grove of fruit-trees on an uncultivated 
mountain round a small temple, the peristyle of which serves as 
a place of shelter for travellers, announce, in situations the most 
deserted,, the humanity of the inhabitants. Simple inscriptions 
on the bark of a beech-tree, or on a rude unpolished rock, per- 
petuate to posterity the memory of illustrious citizens, and of 
great actions. In the midst of manners so beneficent, Religion 
speaks to all hearts, in a language that knows no change. There 
is not a single mountain, nor a river, but what is consecrated to 
some God, and is called by his name ; not a fountain but what 
has it's Naiad ; not a flower, nor a bird, but what is the result 
of some ancient and affecting metamorphosis. The whole of 
Physics is there conveyed in religious sentiments, and all reli- 
gion in the monuments of Nature. Death itself, which empoi- 
sons so many pleasures, there presents perspectives only of con- 
solation. The tombs of ancestors are raised amidst groves of 
myrtle, of cypress, and of fir. Their descendants, to whom they 


ftndeared themselves in life, resort thither in their hours of 
pleasure, or of pain, to decorate them with flowers, and to in- 
voke their shades, persuaded that they continually preside over 
their destinies. The past, the present, and the future, link to- 
gether all the members of this Society with the bands of the 
Law of Nature, so that, there, to live and to die is equally an 
object of desire. 

Such was the vague idea which I gave of the Plan of my 
Work to John-James. He was delighted with it. We made 
it oftener than once, on our walking excursions, the subject of 
much pleasant conversation. He sometimes imagined incidents 
of a poignant simplicity, of which I availed myself. Nay, one 
day, he persuaded me to change my Plan entirely. " You 
" must," said he to me, '* suppose a principal action in your 
" History, such as that of a man on his travels, to improve him- 
t tl self in the knowledge of Mankind. Out of this will spring 
" up incidents varied and agreeable. Besides, it will be neces- 
" sary to oppose to the state of Nature of the Nations of Ar- 
" cadia, the state of corruption of some other People, in order 
u to give relief to your pictures by means of contrasts." 

This advice was to me a ray of light which produced ano- 
ther : namely, first of all, to oppose to these two pictures, that 
of the barbarism of a third people, in order to represent the 
three successive states through which most Nations pass ; that 
of barbarism, that of Nature, and that of corruption. I thus 
had a complete harmony of three periods usual to human So- 

In the view of representing a state of barbarism, I made 
choice of Gaul, as a country, the commencements of which in 
every respect ought to interest us the most, because the first 
of a People communicates an influence to all the periods 
of it's duration, and makes itself felt even in a state of decline, 
just as the education which a man receives on the breast ex- 
tends it's influence even to the age of decrepitude. Nay it seems 
as if at this last epocha the habits of infancy re-appeared with 
more force than those of the rest of life, as has been observed 
in the preceding Studies. The first impressions efface the last. 
The charat ter of Nations is formed in the cradle, as well as that 
of Man. Rome in her decline preserved the spirit of wr.ivcr- 
>n, which she had from herorii 


I found the principal characters of the manners, and of the 
religion of the Gauls, completely traced in Cesar'' s Commenta- 
ries, in Plutarch, in Tacitus on the Manners of the Germans, 
and in several modern Treatises on the Mythology of the Na- 
tions of the North. 

I have taken up the state of the Gauls several ages prior to 
the time of Julius Cesar, in order to have an opportunity of 
painting a more marked character of barbarism, and approach- 
ing to that which we have found among the savage tribes of 
North America. I fixed the commencement of the civiliza- 
tion of our Ancestors at the destruction of Troy ; which was 
likewise the epocha, and undoubtedly the cause, of several im- 
portant revolutions all over the Globe. The Nations of which 
the Human Race is composed, however divided they may ap- 
pear to be in respect of language, of religion, of customs, and 
of climate, are in equilibrium among themselves, as the differ- 
ent Seas which compose the Ocean under different Latitudes. 
No extraordinary movement can be excited in any one of those 
Seas, but what must communicate itself, more or less, to each 
of the others. They have all a tendency to find their level. A 
Nation is, farther, with respect to the Human Race, what a man 
is with respect to his own Nation. If that man dies in it, ano- 
ther is born there within the same compass of time. In like- 
manner, if one State on the Globe is destroyed, another is re- 
generated at the same epocha : that is what we have seen hap- 
pen in our own times, when the greatest part of the Republic of 
Poland, having been dismembered in the North of Europe, to be 
confounded in the three adjoining States, Russia, Prussia, and 
Austria, very soon after the greatest part of the British Colo- 
nies of North- America, was disunited from the three States of 
England, Scotland, and Ireland, to form one Republic ; and as 
there was in Europe, a portion of Poland not dismembered, 
there was in like manner, in America, a portion of the Colonies 
that did not separate from Great-Britain. 

The same political re-actions are to be found in all Countries, 
and in all ages. When the Empire of the Greeks was sub- 
verted 0:i the banks of the Euxine-Sea, in 1453, that of the 
Turks immediately replaced it ; and when that of Troy was 
destroyed in Asia, under Priam, that of Rome received itV 
birth in Italv. under Eneas. 


But, from that total subversion of Troy, there ensued a great 
man)' revolutions of inferior moment in the rest of the Human 
Race, and especially in the Nations of Europe. 

I opposed to the state of barbarism of the Gauls, that of the 
corruption of Egypt, which was then at it's highest degree of 
civilization. To the epocha of the siege of Troy it is that ma- 
ny learned men have assigned the brilliant reign of Sesestris. 
Besides this opinion, being adopted by Fenelon in his Telema- 
chus, was a sufficient authority for my Work. I likewise se- 
lected my traveller from Egypt, by the advice of John-James* 
in as much as, in Antiquity, a great many political and religious 
establishments were communicated by reflux from Egypt, to 
Greece, to Italy, and even directly to the Gauls, as the History 
of many of our ancient usages sufficiently evinces. This too is 
a consequence of political re-actions. Whenever a State has 
attained it's highest degree of elevation, it is come to it's first 
stage of decay ; because all human things begin to fade as soon 
as they have reached the point of perfection. Then it is that 
the Ails, the Sciences, Manners, Languages, begin to undergo 
a reflux from civilized to barbarous States, as is demonstrated 
by the age of Alexander among the Greeks, of Augustus among 
the Romans, and of Louis XIV. among ourselves. 

I had accordingly oppositions of character in the Gauls, the 
Arcadians, and the Egyptians. But Arcadia alone presented 
me with a great number of contrasts to the other parts of 
Greece, which were but then emerging out of barbarism ; be- 
tween the peaceful manners of it's industrious inhabitants, and 
the boisterous discordant characters of the heroes of Pylos, of 
/U/jcn-nc, and of Argos ; between the gentle adventures of it's 
simple and innocent shepherdesses, and the awful catastrophes 
of Iphigenia, of Electra, and of Clytcmnestra. 

I divided the materials of my Work into twelve Books, and 
constructed a kind of Epic Poem of them ; not conformably to 
the rules laid clown by Aristotle, and to those of our modern 
Critics, who pretend after him, that an Epic Poem ought to 
exhibit only one pvincipal action of the life of a hero ; but con- 
formably to the Laws of Nature, and after the manner of the 
Chinese, who frequently comprehend in it the whole life of a 
hero, which in my judgment is much more satisfactory. Be- 


sides I have not in this deviated from the example of Homer / 
foi-, if I have not adopted the plan of his Iliad, I have nearly 
copied that of his Odyssey. 

But while I was devising plans for the happiness of Man- 
kind, my own was disturbed by new calamities. 

My state of health, and my experience, permitted me no 
longer to solicit in my native Country, the slender resources 
which I was on the point of losing there, nor to go abroad in 
quest of them. Besides, the nature of the labours in which I 
had engaged could not possibly interest any Minister in my fa- 
vour. I thought of presenting to public view such of them as I 
deemed most calculated to merit the protection of Government. 
I published my Studies of Nature. I have the consolation 
of believing that I have, in that Work, confuted sundry dange- 
rous errors, and demonstrated some important truths. Their 
success has procured for me, without solicitation, a great many 
compliments on the part of the Public, and some annual marks 
of favour from the Crown, but of so little solidity, that a slight 
revolution in an' administration has stripped me of most of them, 
and together with them, what is much more vexatious, some 
others of still higher consideration which I had enjoyed for 
fourteen years. Court favour had the semblance of doing me 
good : the benevolence of the Public has given a more steady 
support to me and to my Work. To it I am indebted for a 
transient tranquillity and repose ; and under these auspices I 
send into the World this first Book, entitled The Gauls, to 
serve as an introduction to the Arcadia. I have not enjoyed 
the satisfaction of talking on the subject of it to John-James. 
It was rather too rude for the placidness of our conversations. 
But rough and wild as it may be, it is an opening in the rocks, 
from whence there is a glimpse of the valley in which he some- 
times reposed. Nay when he set out, without bidding me 
farewel, for Ermenonville, where he closed his days, I tried to 
recal myself to him by the image of Arcadia, and by the recol- 
lection of our ancient intercourse, in concluding the letter 
which I wrote to him with these two verses from Virgil, chang- 
ing only a single word. 

Atqvie utinam ex vobis unus tecumque fuK 

Aut custgs gregis, aut maturse vinitor wx ' 




A LITTLE before the autumnal Equinox, Tirteus, a shep 
herd of Arcadia, was feeding his flock on one of the heights of 
Mount Lyceum, which projects along the gulph of Messenia. 
He was seated under the shade of some pine-trees at the foot 
of a rock, from whence he contemplated, at a distance, the Sea 
agitated by the winds of the South. It's olive-coloured waves 
were whitened with foam, which fell back in girandoles thr 
whole length of the strand. The fishing-boats, appearing 
disappearing alternately between the swelling surges, ventured, 
at the risk of running a-ground on the beach, to trust their 
ty to their insignificance ; whereas large vessels, in full sail, ur 
der the violent pressure of the winds, kept at a cautious distance, 
from the dread of being shipwrecked. At the bottom of the 
gulph, crowds of women and children raised their hands to Hea- 
ven, and uttered the cries of solicitude at sight of the danger 
which threatened those poor mariners, and of the succession ol 
billows which rolled from the Sea, and broke with a noise like 
thunder on the rocks of Steniclaros. The echoes of Mount 
Lyceum reverberated their hoarse and confused roarings from 
all quarters, with so much exactness that Tirteus at times turned 
round his head, imagining that the tempest was behind him, 
and that the Sea was breaking on the top of the mountain. But 
the cries of the coots and the sea-gulls, which came flapping 
their wings to seek refuge there, and the flashes of lightning 
which furrowed the Horizon, soon made him sensible that safe- 
ty was on the dry land, and that the tempest was still more 
dreadful at a distance than it i to his view. 


Tirtcus compassionated the destiny of seamen, and pronoun- 
ced that of the shepherd to be blessed, as it in some degree re- 
sembled that of the Gods by placing tranquillity in his heart, 
and the tempest under his feet. 

While he was expressing his gratitude to Heaven, two men 
of a noble deportment appeared on the great road which winded 
below, toward the base of the mountain. One of them was in 
the full vigour of life, and the other still in the bloom of youth. 
They were walking with great speed, like travellers impatient to 
reach their object. As soon as they were within hearing, the 
elder of the two called to Tirteus, asking if they were not on 
the road to Argos. But the noise of the wind among the pines 
preventing his voice from being heard, the younger ascended to- 
ward the shepherd, and cried aloud to him : " Father, are we 
" not upon the road to Argos ?" " My son," replied Tirtewty 
" I do not know where Argos lies. You are in Arcadia, upon 
" the road to Tegeum, and these towers which you see before 
" you are the towers of Bellemine." While they were talking, 
a shagged dog, young and frolicsome, which accompanied 
the stranger, having perceived in the flock a she-goat entirely 
white, ran up to play with her ; but the goat, terrified at the 
sight of this animal, whose eyes were covered all over with hair ; 
fled toward the top of the mountain, and the dog pursued her. 
The young man recalled his dog, which immediately returned 
to his feet, lowering his head, and wagging his tail. He then 
.slipped a leash round the dog's neck, and begging the shepherd, 
to hold him fast, he ran after the goat, which still continued to 
flee before him : his dog however seeing him ready to disappear 
gave so violent a jerk to Tirteus, that he made his escape with 
the leash about his neck, and ran with such speed, that in a 
.short time, neither goat, traveller, nor dog, were to be seen. 

The traveller who had remained on the highway, was pre- 
paring to follow his companion, -vvhen the shepherd thus addres- 
sed him : w Sir, the weather is boisterous, night approaches, 
w ' the forest and the mountain are full of quagmires, in which 
" you may be in danger of losing yourself. Come and repose 
" yourself a while in my cottage, which is not far from hence. 
" I am perfectly sure that my goat, which is very tame, will 
»• return of herself, and bring back vour friend to us, provided 


u he does not lose sight of her." In saying these words he ap- 
plied his pipe to his mouth, and the flock immediately began to 
file off by a path toward the summit of the mountain. A large 
ram marched at the head of this little flock : he was followed 
by six she-goats, whose dugs almost touched the ground ; twelve 
ewes accompanied by their lambs, which were already con- 
siderably grown, came next ; a she-ass and her colt closed the 

The stranger followed Tirteus in silence. They ascended 
about six hundred paces, along an open down planted here and 
there with broom and rosemary : as they were entering the 
forest of oaks, which covers the top of Mount Lyceum, they 
heard the barking of a dog*; soon after they descried the young 
man's shock running toward them, followed by his master, who 
carried the white goat on his shoulders. Tirteus said to him : 
" My son, though this goat is dearer to me than any other of 
" the whole flock, I would rather have lost her than that you 
" should have endured so much fatigue in recovering her ; but 
" if you please, you shall this night repose in my cottage ; and 
" to-morrow, if you are resolved to continue your journey, I 
" will conduct you to Tegeum, where you may be informed of 
" the road to Argos. Notwithstanding, Sirs, if I may be per- 
" mitted to advise, you will not depart from hence to-morrow. 
" It is the feast of Jupiter, celebrated on Mount Lyceum, and 
" people assemble here in multitudes from all Arcadia, and 
" from a great part of Greece. If you are so good as to ac- 
M company me thither, when I present myself at the altar of 
M y u P lter i I shall be rendered more acceptable by adoring him 
" in company with my guests." The young stranger replied ; 
" Oh, good shepherd : we accept with cheerfulness your hos- 
" pitality for this night, but to-morrow with the dawn we must 
" pursue our journey toward Argos. We have for a long time 
" been contending with the waves, in order to reach that city, 
** so celebrated over the whole Earth, for it's temples, for it's 
" palaces, and from it's being the residence of the great Aga~ 
" wemnon" 

After he had thus spoken, they crossed a part of the forest 
of Mount Lyceum toward the East, and descended into a little 
valley sheltered from the winds. A fresh and downv herbage 

Vol. III. T 


covered the sides of it's hills. At the bottom floAved a rivulet 
called Achelous,* which falls into the river Alpheus, whose 
islands, covered with alder and linden-trees, are perceptible at 
a distance from the plain. The trunk of an old willow, laid low 
by the hand of time, served as a bridge to the Achelous : this 
bridge had no ledging, except some large reeds which grew on 
each side of it ; but the brook, the bottom of which was paved 
with rocks, was so easily forded over, and so little use had been 
made of the bridge, that the convolvolus almost entirely cover- 
ed it with it's heart-shaped foliage, and with flowers resembling 
white spires. 

A t a little distance from this bridge stood the dwelling of 
Tirteus. It was a small house covered with thatch, built in the 
middle of a mossy ground. Two poplars formed a shade for 
it to the West. On the South side, a vine surrounded the 
doors and windows with it's purple clusters, and with it's leaves 
already of the colour of fire. An old ivy sheltered it from the 
North, and covered, with it's ever-green foliage, a part of the 
stair-case, which led on the outside to the upper story, 

* There were in Greece several rivers and rivulets which hare this name. 
Care must be taken not to confound the brook which issued from Mount Ly- 
ceum, with the river of that name, which descended from Mount Pindus, 
and which separated Etolia from Acarnania. This River Achelous, as the 
fable goes, changed himself into a Bull, in order to dispute with Hercules the 
possession of Deianira, daughter of Oeneus King of Etolia. But Hercules hav- 
ing seized him by one of his horns, broke it off; and the disarmed River was 
obliged to replace the lost horn, by assuming one taken from the head of the 
goat Jimulthea. The Greeks were accustomed to veil natural truths under 
ingenious fictions. The meaning of the fable in question is this : The Greeks 
gave the name of Achelous to several rivers, from a word which signifies 
fierd of oxen, either on account of the bellowing noise of their waters, or ra- 
ther because their heads usually separated, like those of oxen, into horns, or 
branches, which facilitate their confluence into each other, or into the Si 
has been Observed in 'he preceding Studies. Now the Achelous being liable 
to inundations, Hercules, the friend of Oeneus King of Etolia, formed a canal 
for receiving the superflux of that river, according to Strabo's account, 
which weakened one of it's streams, and gave birth to the fabulous idea, that 
Hercules had broken off one of his horns But as, on the other hand, there 
resulted from this canal a source of abundant fertility to the adjacent coun- 
try, the Greeks added thai Achelous, in place of his bull's horn, had takenin 
exchange that of the goat AmuUf^ea, which, as is well known, was the symbol 
of plenty 


As soon as the flock approached the house they began to 
bleat, according to custom. Immediately a young maiden ap- 
peared, descending the staircase, and carrying under her arm a 
vessel to receive the milk which she was going to draw. Her 
robe was of white wool ; her chesnut locks were turned up un- 
der a hat formed of the rind of the linden tree ; her arms and 
feet were naked, and instead of shoes she wore socks, as is the 
fashion of the young women of Arcadia. From her shape you 
would have thought her one of the nymphs of Diana; from her 
vase, that she was the Naiad of the fountain ; but her timidity- 
soon discovered her to be a shepherdess. As soon as she per- 
ceived the strangers, she cast down her eyes, and blushed. 

Ttrteus said to her : " Cyanea, my daughter, make haste to 
" milk your goats, and to prepare something for supper, while 
" I warm some water to wash the feet of these travellers whom 
" Jupiter has sent to us." In the mean while he entreated the 
strangers to repose themselves on a grass-plat, at the foot of the 
vine. Cyaiica, having kneeled down on the turf, milked the 
goats which had assembled around her; and having finished, she 
led the flock into the sheep-fold, which stood at one end of the 
house. Tirteuti in the mean time warmed water, and washed 
the feet of his guests, after which he invited them to walk in. 
Night was already advanced ; but a lamp suspended from the 
ceiling, and the blaze of the hearth, which was placed after the 
manner of the Greeks, in the middle of the habitation, suffi- 
ciently illuminated the interior of it. There were seen hanging 
round the walls, flutes, shepherds' crooks, scrips, moulds for 
making cheese ; baskets of fruit and earthen pans full of milk 
stood upon shelves fastened to the joists. Over the door by 
which they had entered there was a small statue of the good 
Ceres, and over that of the sheep-fold a figure of the god Pa??, 
formed from the root of an olive tree. . 

As soon as the strangers were introduced, Cijanea covered 
ihe table, and served up cabbages with bacon, some wheaten 
bread, a pot filled with wine, a cream cheese, fresh eggs, and 
some of the second figs of the year, white and violet coloured. 
She placed by the board four seats made of oak. She covered 
that of her father with the skin of a wolf, which he himself had 
killed in hunting. Afterwards, having ascended to the upper 


story, she returned with the fleeces of two sheep ; but whilst she 
spread them on the seats of the travellers she burst into tears. 
Her father said to her : " My dear daughter, will you remain 
" for ever inconsolable about the loss of your mother ? And can 
" you never touch any thing which she was accustomed to use 
** without shedding tears i n Cyanea made no reply, but turning 
her head toward the wall, she wiped her eyes. Tirteus ad- 
dressed a prayer, and offered a libation to Jupiter, the patron of 
hospitality ; then having invited his guests to sit down, they all 
began to eat in profound silence. 

When the meal was finished, Tirteus said to the two travel- 
lers : " My dear guests, had you chanced to enter the habita- 
iC tion of some other inhabitant of Arcadia, or had you passed 
u this way some years ago, you would have been much better 
" received. But the hand of Jupiter has smitten me. I once 
M possessed, upon the neighbouring hill, a garden which sup- 
" plied me at all seasons with pulse, and excellent fruit : It is 
•' swallowed up in the forest. This solitary valley once resound - 
u ed with the lowing of my oxen. Nothing was to be heard, 
" from morn to eve, in my dwelling, but songs of mirth and 
u sounds of joy. I have seen around this table three sons and 
" four daughters. The youngest son was arrived at an age ca- 
" pable of tending a flock of sheep. My daughter Cyanea dres- 
" sed her little sisters, and already supplied the place of a mo- 
u ther to them. My wife, industrious, and still young, main- 
" tained all the year round gaiety, peace and abundance in my 
ct habitation. But the loss of my eldest son has been followed 
" by that of almost my whole family. Like other young men, 
" he was desirous of shewing his agility by climbing up the 
** highest trees. His mother, to whom such exercises caused 
; ' the greatest dread, had frequently entreated him to abstain 
" from amusements of this kind. I had often predicted that 
ne misfortune would be the consequence. Alas! the Gods 
" have punished my unwarrantable predictions by accomplish- 
; ' ing them. One Summer's day, in which my son was in the 
''• forest, keeping the flocks with his brothers, the youngest of 
l * them took a fancy to eat some of the fruit of a wild cherry - 
" tree. The eldest immediately climbed it, in order to gather 
•• them; and when he had reached the summit, which was very 


M elevated, he perceived his mother at a little distance, who per- 
tt ceiving him in her turn, uttered a loud scream and fainted. 
11 At this sight, terror, or repentance, seized my unhappy son; 
" he fell. His mother, being brought to herself by the cries of 
" her children, ran toward him, but in vain attempted to reani- 
" mate him in her arms : the unfortunate youth turned his eyes 
" toward her, pronounced her name and mine, and expired. 
" The grief with which my wife was overwhelmed, carried her 
" in a few days to the grave. The most tender union reigned 
" amongst my children, and equalled their affection for their 
" mother. They however all died, through sorrow for her loss, 
" and for that of each other. How much anxiety has it cost me 

" to preserve this poor girl!" Thus spake Tirtens, and in 

spite of his efforts the tears rushed to his eyes. Cyanea threw 
herself on the bosom of her father, and mixing her tears with 
his, she pressed him in her arms, unable to utter a syllable. Tir- 
teus said to her : " Cyanea, my dear daughter, my sole conso- 
" lation, cease to afflict thyself. We shall one day see them 
*' again ; they are with the Gods." Thus he spake, and serenity 
once more appeared on his countenance, and on that of his 
daughter. With the greatest composure, she poured out some 
wine into each of the cups ; then taking a spindle, and a distaff 
furnished with wool, she seated herself by her father, and began 
to spin, looking at him, and supporting herself on his knees. 

The travellers in the mean time were melted into tears. At 
length the younger of the two, resuming the conversation, said 
to Tirteus : " Had we been received into the palace, and at the 
u table of Agamemnon, at that instant when, covered with glorv, 
" he was restored to his daughter Iphigenia, and to his wife 
*' Clytcmneatra, who had languished for his return so long, we 
" could neither have seen nor heard any thing so affecting as 
|* what we have just witnessed. — Oh ! my good shepherd ! \r. 
" must be acknowledged that you have experienced severe tri- 
" als ; but it Cephas, whom you see here, would relate to you 
u those which overwhelm men in every quarter of the Globe, 
" you would spend this whole night in listening to him, an. 
" blessing your own lot: how many sources of distress an 
" known to you in the midst of this peaceful retreat! \ 


" live in perfect freedom ; Nature supplies all your wants ; pa- 
" ternal love renders you happy, and a mild religion consoles 
" you under all your griefs." 

Cephas, taking up the conversation, said to his young friend : 
" My son, relate to us your own misfortunes : Tirteus will 
" listen to you with more interest than he would to me. In 
" mature age, virtue is generally the fruit of reason ; in youth, 
' it is always that of feeling." 

Tirtcus, addressing himself to the young stranger, said : 
" Persons of my age do not sleep much. If you are not over 
" oppressed with fatigue, I shall receive great pleasure from 
" hearing you. I have never quitted my own country, but I 
" love and honour travellers. They are under the protection of 
" Mercury and of Jupiter. Something useful may always be 
" gathered from them. As for yourself, you must certainly 
" have experienced great distress in your own country, having 
" at so early an age separated from your parents, with whom it 
" is so pleasant to live and to die." 

" Though it is difficult," replied the young man, " to speak 
" alwajs of ourselves with sincerity, yet, as you have given us 
" so kind a reception, I shall candidly relate to you all my ad- 
" ventures both good and bad." 

My name is Amasis. I was born at Thebes in Egypt, the 
son of an opulent father. He had me educated by the priests 
of the Temple of Osiris. They instructed me in all the Sci- 
ences upon which Egypt values herself: the sacred language by 
which you may converse with ages past, and that of the Greeks, 
which enables us to hold converse with all the Nations of Eu- 
rope. But what is infinitely superior to Science and Language, 
they taught me to be just, to speak truth, to fear the Gods only, 
and to prefer before every thing else that glory which is ac- 
quired by virtue. 

This last sentiment increased in me as I grew up. Nothing 
had been spoken of in Egypt for some time past but the Trojan 
war. The names of Achilles, of Hector, and of other heroes, 
disturbed my sleep. I would have purchased a single day of 
their renown, by the sacrifice of my whole life. I thought the 
iv of my countryman Mor.non was enviable, who had pe- 


rished on the walls of Troy, and in honour of whom a superb 
monument was reared at Thebes.* What do I say ? I would 
willingly have given my body to be changed into the statue of 

• Memnon, the son of ' Tithonua and Aurora, was killed at the siege of Troy 
by Achillas. A magnificent tomb was erected to his memory at Thebes in 
Egypt, the ruins of which still subsist on the banks of the Nile, in a place 
called by the Ancients Mernnonium ,■ and in modern times, by the Arabians, 
t Habmi ; that is, City of the Father. Here are still to be seen colos- 
sal fragments of his statue, out of which in former times harmonious sounds 
issued at the rising of Aurora. 

I propose to make, in this place, some observations on the subject of the 
sound which that statue produced, because it is particularly interesting to 
the study of Nature. In the first place, it is impossible to call the fact in 
question. The English Traveller Richard Pocock, who, in the year 17oB, vi- 
sited the remains of the Mernnonium, of which he has given a description as 
minute as the present state of things admits of, quotes, on the subject of the 
marvellous effect of Memnoria statue, several authorities of the Ancients, of 
which I here present an abridgment. 

Strabo tells us, that there were in the Mernnonium, among other colossal 
figures, two statues at a small distance from each other ; thai the upper part 
of one of them had been thrown down, and that there issued once a day from 
it's pedestal, a noise similar to that produced by striking upon a hard body. 
He himself heard the noise, having been on the spot with ATJius Gallics ,■ but 
he pretends not to affirm, whether it proceeded from the basis, or from the 
statue, or from the by-standers. 

Pliny the Naturalist, a man more scrupulously exact than is generally ima- 
gined, when an extraordinary fact is to be attested, satisfies himself with re- 
I he one in question, on the public faith, employing such terms of doubt 
Varratur, ut putant, dicunt, of which he makes such frequent use 
in his Work. It is when he is mentioning the stone called basalies, Hiat. , 
16. cup. 7. 

dem Eguptus in Ethiopia quern vacant basalteti, ferrei color is atqitc 


JVon absimilia illinarratur in Thebia, delubro Ser apis ut putant, Memnonu stu- 
tua i ■'■ in quotidiano soils ortu eontactum radiia crepare die 

" Tli .vise iound, in Ethiopia, a stone called basaltes, of the 

" colour and hardness of iron 

" One not unlike it is said to be the stone of which the statue of Memnon 
" is made, at Thebes, in the Temple of Serapis, from whence, as the n 

s every morning on it's being struck with the rays of 
• nl so carefully on his guard against superstition, especially the super- 
stition • adopts this fact in his fifteenth Satire, which is level:, 
EJf\ Itet aurea cercopitheci 
I) mid a magic* resonant ubi Memnone chordae, 
Tin bee centum j ace! ol 


a hero, provided they had exposed me, on a pillar, to the ve- 
neration of Nations. I resolved then to tear myself from the 
delights of Egypt, and from ihe endearments of my paternal 

" There shines the gilded image of a consecrated monkey, where the ma- 
" gic chords resound from the mutilated statue of Memnon, and ancient The- 
" bes lies buried under the ruins of her hundred gates." 

Pausanias relates that it was Cc.mbyscs who broke this statue; that half of 
the trunk was fallen to the ground ; that the other half emitted every day, at 
sun-rising, a sound similar to that of a bow-string snapping from over-tension. 

Ph-hstratus speaks of it from his own knowledge. He says, in the life of 
Apellonh's of T„vana, that the Memnonium was not only a Temple, but a fo« 
rum ; that is a place of very considerable extent, containing it's public squares, 
it's private buildings, &c. For temples, in ancient times, had a great many 
exterior dependencies ; the groves which were consecrated to them, ipart- 
ments for the priests, enclosures for the victims, and accommodations for the 
entertainment of strangers. Philostrutus assures us that he saw the statue 
of Memnon entire, which supposes that the upper part of it had been repaired 
in his time. He represents it tinder the form of a young man sitting, with 
his eyes turned toward the rising Sun. It was of a biack-coloured stone. 
Both feet were in u line, as was the case with all the ancient statues, up to the 
time of Dedulus, who was the first it is said thai made statues to advance, 
the one leg before the other. It's hands rested on the thighs, as if going to 

On looking at the eyes and mou.h you would have thought it was going 
to speak. Philostrutus and his travelling companions were not surprized at 
the attitude of this staiue, because they were ignorant of it's virtue : but 
when the rays of the rising S in first darted on it's head, they no sooner 
reached the mouth than it did actually speak, which appealed to them a 

Here is, accordingly, a series of grave Authors, from Strabo, who lived 
under Augustus, down to Plulostratus, who lived under the reigns of Cava- 
catta and Getc, that is, during a period of two hundred years, who affirm 
that the statue of Memnon emitted a sound at the rising of Anroru. 

As to Richard Pocock, who saw only the half of it in 1738, he found it in 
the same state that Strabo had seen it, about 1738 years before, except that 
it emitted no sound. He sajs it is of a particular sort of granite, hard and 
porous, such as he had never seen before, and which a good deal resembles 
die cagle-stonc. At the distance of thirty feet from it, to the North, there is, 
as in the time of Strabo, another colossal statue entire, built of five layers of 
stones, the pedestal of which is 30 feet long and 17 broad. But the pedestal 
of the mutilated statue, which is that of Memnon, is 33 feet long by 19 broad. 
It consists of a single piece, though cleft about 10 feet behind the back of 
the statue. Pocock says nothing of the height of these pedestals, undoubt- 
edly because they are encumbered with sand ; or rather because the perpe- 
tual and insensible action of gravity must have made them sink into the Earth, 
as may be remarked of all the ancient monuments which are not founded on 


mansion, in order to acquire an illustrious reputation. Every 
time that I presented myself before my father, " Send me to 
" the siege of Troy," said I to him, " that I may purchase for 

the solid rock. This effect is observable, in like manner, in the case of 
heavy cannon, and piles of balls, laid on the ground in our arsenals, which 
imperceptibly sink in the course of a few years, unless supported by strong 

As to the rest of the statue of Memnon, the following- are the dimensions 
given by Pocock. 

Feet. In. 

From the sole of the foot to the ankle-bone 2 6 

From ditto to the instep 4 

From ditto up to the top of the knee - - - 19 

The foot is 5 feet broad, and the leg 4 feet thick. 

Pocock apparently refers these measurements to the English standard, 
which reduces them nearly by the eleventh part. He found besides on the 
pedestal, on the legs and the feet of the statue, several inscriptions in un- 
known characters ; others of great antiquity, in Greek and Latin, very indif- 
ferently engraved, which are the attestations of the persons who had heard 
the sound which it emitted. 

The remains of the Memnonium present all around, to a very great dis- 
tance, ruins of an immense and uncouth architecture, excavations in the solid 
rock which form part of a temple, prodigious fragments of walls tumbled 
down and reduced to rubbish, and others standing ; a pyramidical gate, 
avenues, square pillars, surmounted by statues with the head broken off, 
holding in one hand a lituns, and a whip in the other, as that of Osiris. At 
a still greater distance, fragments of gigantic figures lie scattered along the 
ground, heads of six feet diameter, and 11 feet in length, shoulders 21 feet 
broad, human ears three feet long and 16 inches broad ; other figures which 
seem to issue out of the earth, of which the Phrygian bonnets only are to be 
seen. All these gigantic productions arc made of the most precious mate- 
rials, of black and white marble, of marble entirely black, of marble with 
red spots, of black granite, of yellow granite ; and they are, for the most 
part, loaded with hieroglyphics. What sentiments of respect and admira- 
tion must have been produced in the minds of those superstitious people, by 
such enormous and mysterious fabrics, especially when in their solemnly si- 
lent courts, plaintive sounds were heard issuing from a breast of stone, at 
the first rays of Aurora, and the colossal Memnon sighing at sight of his 

The fact is too well attested, and is of too long duration, to admit of be- 
ing called in question. Nevertheless many of the learned have thought pro- 
per to ascribe it to some exterior unci momentaneous artifice of the priests of 
Thebes. Nay it appears that Strabo, who witnessed the noise made by the 
statue, hints this suspicion. We know in reality that ventriloquists are able, 

Vol. III. Z 


" myself a name renowned among men. You have my elder 
" brother with you, who is sufficient to secure the continuance 
" of your posterity : If you always oppose my inclinations, 

without moving the lips, to utter words and sounds which seem to come 
from a considerable distance, though they are produced close by your side. 
For my own part, however durable the marvellous effect of Mcmnon , s statue 
may be supposed, I can conceive it produced by the Aurora, and easily im- 
itable, without being under the necessity of renewing the artifice of it, till 
after the lapse of ages. It is well known that the priests of Egypt made a par- 
ticular study of Nature ; that they had formed of it a Science known by the 
name of Magic, the possession of which they reserved to themselves. They 
were not ignorant assuredly of the effect of the dilatation of metals, and 
among others of iron, which is contracted by cold and lengthened by heat. 
They might have placed, in the great basis of Memnon'a statue, a long iron 
rod in a spiral line, and susceptible, from it's extension, of contraction and 
dilatation, by the slightest action of cold and of heat. 

This medium was sufficient for extracting sound from some metallic com- 
position. Their colossal statues being partly hollow, as may be seen in the 
sphvr>x near the pyramids of Grand Cairo, they could dispose in them ma- 
chine:-.- of every kind. The stone itself of the statue of JWemnon being, ac- 
cording to Pliny, a basaltes, which possesses the hardness and the colour of 
iron, may very well have the power of contracting and of dilating itself, like 
this metal, of which it is apparently composed. It is certainly of a nature 
different from other stones, as Pocock, who had made observation of all sorts 
of these, affirms that he had never seen the like of it. He ascribes to it a 
particular character of hardness and porosity, which are in general attributes 
of ferruginous s' ones. It might therefore be susceptible of contraction and 
dilatation, and thus possess within itself a principle of motion, especially at 
the rising of Aurora, when the contrast of the cold night and of the first rays 
fjf the rising Sun bar, most action. 

This effect must have been infallible under a sky like that of Upper Egypt, 
where i1 scarcely ever rains. The sounds emitted from the statue of JHemnon, 
at the moment when the Sun appeared over the Horizon of Thebes, had 
therefore nothing more marvellous in it, than the explosion of the cannon of 
the Palais Royal, and that of the mortar of the King's Garden, as the Sun 
passes over the meridian of Paris. With a burning glass, a bit of match, and 
some gunpowder, it would be easily possible to make a statue of Jupiter 
thunder in the midst of a desert, on such a day of the year, and even at 
such an hour of the day and of the night as might be resolved on. This 
would appear so much the more marvellous, that it would thunder only in 
clear weather, like the highly ominous thunder-claps arnon^ the Ancients. 

What prodigies are operated at this day on persons labouring under the 
prejudices of superstition, by means of electricity, which through the me- 
dium of a rod of iron, or of copper, strikes in an invisible manner, is capa- 
ble of killing a man at a single blow, calls down the thunder from the bosom 
ef the cloud, and directs it at pleasure as it falls ! What effects might not fee 


" through the dread of losing me, know, that if I escape the 
" sword, I shall not escape the more painful death of chagrin." 
In truth, I was visibly declining ; I avoided all society, and 

produced by means of aerostation, that art still in it's infancy, which through 
the medium of a globe of taffeta, glazed over with an elastic gum, and filled 
with a putrid air, eight or ten times lighter tha , that which we breathe, rai- 
ses several men at once above the clouds, where the winds transport them 
to incredible distances, at the rate of nine or ten leagues an hour, and with- 
out the least fatigue ? Our aerostats it is true are of no manner of use to us, 
because they arc carried along at the mercy of the winds, as they have not 
yet discovered the means of conducting their machinery ; but I am persua- 
ded they will one day attain this point of perfection. There is, on the sub- 
ject of this invention, a very curious passage in the History of China, which 

- that the Chinese were in ancient times acquainted with aerostation, 
and that they knew the method of conducting the machine which way they 
pleased, by night and by day. This need not excite surprize on the part of 
a Nation which has invented before us the Art of Printing, the Mariner's 
Compass, and Gun-powder. 

I shall give this fart complete from the Chinese annals, in the view of ren- 
dering our incredulous Readers somewhat more reserved, when they treat as 
fabulous what they do not comprehend in the History of Antiquity ; and cre- 
dulous Readers not quite so easy of belief, when they ascribe to miracles, or 
to magic, effects which modern physics imitate publicly in our own days. 

It is on the subject of the Emperor Ki, according to Father le Comte, or 
Kimi, conformable to the pronunciation of Father Martini, who has 
us a History of the earliest Emperors of China, after the annals of the Coun- 
try. This Prince, who reigned about three thousand six hundred years ag'o, 

himself up to the commission of cruelties so barbarous, and to u 
larities so abominable, that the name is to this day held in detestation all 
over China, and that when they mean to describe a man dishonoured by 
every species of criminality, they give him the appellation of Kiev. In order 
to enjoy the delights of a voluptuous life, without distraction, he retired, 
with his lady and favourites, into a magnificent palace, from which the light 
of the Sun was excluded on every side. He supplied it's place by an infinite 
number of superb lamps, the lustre of which seemed, to him, preferable to 
that of the Orb of Day, because it was ever uniform, and did not recal to his 
imagination, by the vicissitudes of day and night, the rapid course of human 
life. Thus, in the midst of splendid apartments always illuminated, he re- 
nounced the government of Empire, to put on the yoke of his own passions. 
Hut the Nations, whose interests lie had abandoned, having revolted, chaced 
him from his infamous retreat, and sent him out a vagabond for his life, hav- 
mduct deprived his posterity of ihe succession to the Crown, 
which was transferred to an lily, :\\d leaving a memory loaded with 

such execrations, Lha1 the Chinese Historians ncvor give him any other name 
■ it once bestowing on him Uie title of Emperor. 


was so recluse that they gave me the sirname of Moncros. To 
no purpose did my father attempt to combat a sentiment, which 
was the fruit of the education he had given me. 

" At the same time," says Father le Comie, " they destroyed his palace ; 
" and in order to transmit to posterity the memory of worthlessness so emi- 
" ncnt, they suspended the lamps of it in all the quarters of the city. This 
" custom was repeated annually, and became from that time a remarkable fes- 
" tivity all over the Empire. It is celebrated at Yamt-Cheou with more mag- 
" nificencethan any where else and it is said that formerly the illuminations 
r( on this occasion were so beautiful, that one Emperor, not daring avowedly 
" to quit his Court, and resort thither to enjoy the spectacle, put himself, the 
" Queen and several Princesses of the Blood, into the hands of a magician, 
" who engaged to convey them to it in a very short time. He made them 
" mount in the night-time on superb thrones, which were carried aloft by 
" swans, and which in a moment arrived at Yamt-Cheou. 

" The Emperor, wafted through the air on clouds which gradually de- 
" scended over the city, contemplated the whole festival at his leisure : he af- 
" tcrwards returned thence with the same velocity, and by the same vehicle, 
" without it's being perceived at Court that he had been at all absent. This 
" is not the only fable which the Chinese relate. They have histories rela- 
" tive to every subject, for they are superstitious to an excess, and on the sub- 
" ject of magic in particular, whether feigned or real, there is not a People in 
" the World to be compared with them." 

Memoirs of the Present State of China, by Father le Comte. Letter VI. 
This Emperor, who was thus transported through the air, according to Fa- 
ther Magaillam was called Tarn, and this event took place two thousand 
years after the reign of Kieu ; that is about sixteen hundred years ago. Fa- 
ther Magaillans, who expresses no doubt respecting the truth of the event. 
though he supposes it to have been performed by magic, adds, after the Chi- 
nese, diat the Emperor Tern caused a concert of vocal and instrumental mu- 
sic to be played by his band in the air over Yamt-Cheou, which greatly sur- 
prized the inhabitants of that city. It's distance from Nankin, where the 
Emperor might be then supposed to reside, is about eighteen leagues. How- 
ever, if he was at Pekin, as Magaillans gives us to understand, when he says 
that the Courier from Yamt-Cheou was a month on the road, in carrying him 
the news of that extraordinary music, which they ascribed to the inhabitants 
of Heaven, the aerial journey was 175 leagues in a straight line. 

But without departing from the fact as it stands, if Father le Comte had 
seen at noon-day, as was done by the whole inhabitants of Paris, of London, 
and of the other most considerable cities of Europe, Philosophers suspended 
ibes above the clouds, carried 40, nay 50 leagues from the point of their 
nd one of them crossing, through the air, the arm of the Sea 
which separates England from France, he would not so hastily have treated 
the Chinese tradition as a fable. I find besides a great analogy of forms be- 
tween those mvgnifcent thrones and those clouds -.vhich gradually descended 


One day he introduced me to Cephas, exhorting me to follow 
his counsels. Though I had never seen Cephas before, a secret 
sympathy attached me to him, the moment I beheld him. This 
respectable friend did not endeavor to oppose my favorite pas- 
sion, but, in order to weaken it, he changed the object : " You 
" thirst after glory," said he to me " it is undoubtedly the most 
" desirable thing in the World, since the Gods reserve it for 
" themselves as their peculiar portion. But how can you reckon 
" upon obtaining it at the siege of Troy ? Which side would 
u you take ; that of the Greeks or of the Trojans ? Justice de- 
" clares for Greece ; compassion and duty for Troy. You are 
u an Asiatic ;* would you then combat in favour of Europe 
" against Asia ? Would you bear arms against Priam, that fa- 
" ther, and that King so unfortunate, ready to sink, with his 
*' family and empire, under the arms of Greece ? On the other 
' hand. Would you undertake th<* defence of the ravisher Paris, 
" and of the adulteress Helen against Menelaus her husband ? 

•ver the city of Yamt-Cheoii, and our aerostatic globes, to which it is so easily 
possible to give those voluminous decorations. The conducting swans alone 
seem to present a difficulty in the management of this aerial navigation. But 
wherefore should it be deemed impossible for the Chinese to have trained 
swans to flight simply, herbivorous birds, so easily tamed to the purposes of 
domestic life, when it is considered that we have instructed the falcon, a bird 
of prey always wild, to pursue the game, and afterwards to return to the 
wrist of the fowler? The Chinese, living under a much better police, more 
ancient and more pacific than we, have acquired an insight into Nature 
which our perpetuiu discords permitted us not to attain till a much later pe- 
riod . and, undoubtedly, it is this profound insight into Nature which Father 
le Comte, otherwise a man of understanding, considers as magic, pretended or 
real| in which lie acknowledges the Chinese surpassed all nations. For my 
own part, T, who am no magician, think I have a glimpse, conformably to 
some of the Works of Nature, of an easy method whereby aerostats may di- 
rect their course even against the wind ; but 1 would not publish it were I 
ever so certain of it's success. What miseries have not the perfecting of the 
eompass, and of gun-powder brought upon the Human Race ! The desirable 
object li is not, what is to render us more intelligent, but what is to 

i us better. Science in the hand of Wisdom is a torch which illumi- 
nates, but brandished by the hand of wickedness, it sets the World on fire. 

• Jim plum, and Egypt wa9 in Africa; but the Ancients as- 

signed this < \*<ia. The Nile served as a boundary to Asia on * he 

\\ est Consult Pliny, and the ancient Geographers. 


" Inhere is no true glory independent of justice. But even 
" though a free man were able to ascertain, in the quarrels of 
" Kings, on which side justice lay, Do you conceive that in fol- 
" lowing it would consist the greatest possible glory that can be 
" acquired ? Whatever applauses conquerors may receive from 
" their compatriots, trust me, Mankind know well how to place 
" them, one day, in their proper situation. They have given 
" only the rank of heroes and of demigods to those who have 
" merely practised justice, such as Theseus, Hercules, Pirithous. 
" But they have raised to the supreme order of Deity, those 
u who have been beneficent ; such as Isis, who gave Laws to 
" men ; Osiris, who taught them the Arts, and Navigation ; A- 
" polio, music ; Mercunj, Commerce ; Pan, the art of breeding 
44 cattle ; Bacchus, the cultivation of the vine ; Ceres, that of 
44 corn. I am a native of Gaul," continued Cephas ; " it is a 
" country naturally rich and fertile, but which, for want of civi- 
44 lization, is destitute of the greater part of those things which 
" minister to happiness. Let us go and carry thither the arts, 
*' and the useful plants of Egypt; a humane Religion and social 
44 Laws : we may perhaps bring back some commodities useful 
44 to your own Country. There does not exist a Nation, how- 
44 ever savage it may be, that does not possess some ingenuity, 
u from which a polished People may derive benefit ; some an- 
44 cient tradition, some rare production, which is peculiar to it's 
44 own climate. It is thus that Jupiter* the Father of Mankind, 
44 was desirous of uniting, by a reciprocal interchange of benefits, 
" all the Nations of the Earth ; poor or rich, barbarian or civi- 
44 lized. Even if we should be unable to find in Gaul any thing 
" that can be used in Egypt, or were we, by some accident, to 
4C lose the fruit of our voyage, still there will remain for us one 
u thing of which neither death nor tempests can deprive us j I 
44 mean the satisfaction of having done good." 

This discourse suddenly illuminated my mind with a ray ol 
divine light. I embraced Cephas, with tears in my eyes : " Let 
" us depart," said I to him, " let us do good to Mankind, and 
" imitate the Gods !" 

My father approved of our project. When I took my leave 
of him, he folded me in his arms, saying : " My son, you are 
" going to undertake the most difficult task in the World ; for 


" you are going to engage in labour for the benefit of Mankind. 
" But if you can by such means, promote your own happiness, 
" rest assured that you will render mine complete." 

After having taken leave of our friends, Cephas and I em- 
barked at Canopus, on board a Phenician vessel which was go- 
ing to Gaul for a cargo of furs, and for pewter, to the British 
Islands. We carried with us linen-cloths, models of waggons, 
of ploughs, and of various looms ; pitchers of wine, musical in- 
struments, and grains of different species ; among others those of 
hemp and flax. We caused to be fastened in chests, round the 
poop of the ship, on the deck, and even along the cordage, slips 
of die vine, which were in blossom, and fruit trees of various 
sorts. You might have taken our vessel, covered with vine 
branches and foliage, for that of Bacchus setting out on the con- 
quest of the Indies. 

We anchored, first, on the coast of the Island of Crete, to 
take in some plants which were suitable to the climate of Gaul. 
This island produces a greater quantity of vegetables than 
Egypt, in the vicinity of which it is situated, from the variety 
of it's temperatures, extending from the burning sands of it's 
shores, up to the snowy region of Mount Ida, the summit of 
which is lost in the clouds. But what ought to render it still 
more valuable to it's inhabitants, is it's having been governed 
by the sage laws of Minos. 

A favourable wind afterwards drove us from Crete to the 
height of Melita.* This is a small island, the hills of which, 
being formed of white stone, appear at a distance on the Sea, 
like cloth spread out to bleach in the Sun. We cast anchor 
here, to lay in water, which is preserved in great purity, in cis- 
terns. In vain should we have sought, in this place, for any 
other species of supply : the island is destitute of every thing, 
though, from it's situation between Sicilly and Africa, and from 
the vast extent of it's port, which is divided into several arms, 
it ought to be the centre of commerce for all the Nations of 
Europe, of Africa, and even of Asia. It's inhabitants subsist 
entirely by plunder. We presented them with some seeds oi 

• This is ih~' Island rev called Malta. 


the melon, and of the xylon.* This is an herb which thrives 
in the driest places, and the wool of which serves tor the ma- 
nufacture of cloths extremely white and delicate. Though 
Melita, which is an entire rock, produces almost nothing rit for 
the subsistence of men and animals, yet there is taken annuallyj 
about the autumnal Equinox, a prodigious quantity of quails,! 
which repose there, on their passage from Europe to Africa. 
It is an amusing spectacle to see them, fattened us they are, 
cross the Sea in quantities incredible. They wait till the wind 
blows from the North, when, raising one of their wings in the 
air like a sail, and beaiing with the other like an oar, they 
graze along the waves, having their rumps loaded with lat. 
When they arrive at this island, they are so fatigued that they 
might be caught with the hand. A man can gather more in 
one day than he can make use of in a year. 

From Melita, we were wafted by the gale as far as the Isles 
of Enosis4 which are situated at the southern extremity of 
Sardinia. There the winds became contrary and obliged us t« 

* This is the cotton on a herb : it is originally a native of Egypt. They 
now manufacture at Malta very beautiful stuff of it, which is the principal 
source of support to the commonalty of that island, who are miserably indi- 
gent. There is a second species produced on a shrub which is cultivated in 
Asia and the West-India islands. Nay I believe there is a third species that 
grows in America on a tall prickly tree ; such care has Nature taken to diffuse 
a vegetable so useful over all the warm regions of the Globe ! This much is 
certain, that the Savages of the parts of America which are situated between 
the Tropics, made for themselves garments and hammocks of cotton when 
Columbus landed on that Continent. 

f The quails still take Malta in their way, and appear on a day named and 
marked in the almanacks of the country. The customs of the animal crea- 
tion do not vary ; but those of the human species have undergone consider- 
able changes in that island. Some Grand-Masters of the Order of St. John, 
to whom the island belongs, have there engaged in projects of public utility ; 
among others, they have conveyed the water of a rivulet into the very har- 
bour. Many other undertakings are still behind undoubtedly, which con- 
cern the Happiness of the Human Race. 

\ These are at this time called the Islands of Saint Peter and of St. Anti- 
ochus. They are very small ; but they have a great fishery for tunnies, and 
they manufacture great quantities of salt. 


anchor. These islands consist of sandy rocks, which produce 
nothing ; but by a wonderful interposition of the providence of 
the Gods, who in places the most unproductive find the means 
of supporting Man in a thousand different ways ; tunnies are 
given to these islands, as quails are to the rock of Melita. In 
Spring, the tunnies, which make their way from the Ocean into 
the Mediterranean, pass in such great quantities between Sar- 
dinia and the Islands of Enosis, that their inhabitants are oc- 
cupied, night and day, in fishing for them, in salting them, and 
in extracting their oil. I have seen upon their shores heaps of 
the burnt bones of these fishes, which were higher than this 
house. But this gift of Nature does not render the inhabi- 
tants affluent. They fish for the benefit of the inhabitants of 
Sardinia. Thus, we saw slaves only in the Island of Enosis, 
and tyrants alone at Melita. 

The wind becoming favourable, we departed, after having 
presented the inhabitants with some slips of the vine, and re- 
ceived from them some young plants of the chesnut-tree, which 
they import from Sardinia, where the fruit of these trees grows 
to a considerable size. 

During the voyage, Cephas pointed out to me the variegated 
aspects of the land, not one of which Nature has made similar 
to another, in quality and in form ; in order that divers plants 
and animals may find, in the same climate, different tempera- 
tures. When nothing was to be perceived but the Heavens and 
the water, he called my attention to men. " Observe," said 
he to me, " these sea-faring people, how robust they are ! 
" you might take them for tritons. ltodily exercise is the ali- 
" ment of health.* It dissipates an infinite number of disea- 
" ses and passions, which spring out of the repose of cities. 
" The Gods have planted human life in the same manner as the 
" oaks of my country. The more they are buffetted by the 

• Certain Philosophers have carried matters much farther. They have 
nded thai bodilj 

good only for l I: 
ingis more common than !■• 
I virtue, ami robust persons very.: 

I quali- 
\ raments an 

Vol. III. A a 


" winds, the more vigorous they become. The Sea," continued 
he, " is the school of every virtue : there, you live in priva- 
" tions, and in dangers of every sort. You are there under the 
•" necessity of being courageous, sober, chaste, prudent, patient, 
** vigilant, religious." But," answered I, " How comes it that 
u the greater part of the companions of our voyage possess none 
" of these qualities ? They are, almost all of them, intemperate, 
" violent, impious, commending and blaming without discern- 
a n,c:nt, whatever they see performed." 

" It is not the sea which has corrupted them," replied Cephas; 
" they have brought with them the passions of the land. It is 
" the love of riches, idleness, and the desire of giving themselves 
" up to all manner of irregularities, when on shore which de- 
" tei mines a great number of men to enter into the sea-service, 
" for the purpose of enriching themselves j and as they cannot 
" acquire, without a great deal of trouble, the means of gratifi- 
" cation on this element, you always see them restless, sullen 
" and impatient, because there is nothing so discontented as 
" vice, when it finds itself in the road of virtue. A ship is the 
" crucible in which morals are put to the test. There the wicked 
" degenerate more and more, and the good become better. Vir- 
" tue, however, can derive advantage from every situation. 
" Profiting by their defects, you may here learn equally to des- 
*' pise abuse and idle applause ; to act so as to merit your own 
" approbation, and to have no other witness of your actions but 
" the Gods. He who is desirous of doing good to Mankind, 
" must inure himself betimes to submit to unkind treatment from 
" them. It is by the labour of the body, and the injustice of 
" men, that you are enabled to fortify, at once, both your body 
" and your soul. It was by such means that Hercules acquired 
" that courage, and that invincible strength, which have raised 
" his glory to the stars. 

I followed then, as far as I was able, the advice of my friend, 
notwithstanding my extreme youth. I exerted myself in raising 
the unwieldy sail-yards, and in managing the sails. But the 
least raillery from my companions, who ridiculed my inexperi- 
ence, entirely disconcerted me. It would have been easier for 
me to contend with the boisterous elements than with the con- 


tempt of men : such sensibility to the opinions of others had my 
education inspired. 

We passed the strait which separates Africa from Europe, 
and saw on the right and on the left, the two mountains, Calpe 
and Abila, which fortify the entrance. Our Phenician sailors 
did not fail to inform us, that their Nation was the first of all 
those of the Earth which had dared to penetrate into the vast 
Ocean, and coast along it's shores, even as far as the Frozen 
Zone. They placed their own reputation far above that of Her- 
cules, who erected, as they said, two pillars at this passage, with 
the inscription, Beyond this you cannot pass, as if the ter- 
mination of his labours were also to be that of the researches of 
Mankind. Cephas, who neglected no opportunity of recalling 
men to a sense of justice, and of rendering homage to the me- 
mory of heroes, said to them : " I have always heard it said 
" that the ancients ought to be respected. The inventors of a 
" science are the most worthy of commendation, because they 
" open the career to other men. It is less difficult afterwards 
" for those who follow them to extend their progress. A child, 
" mounted on the shoulders of a tall man, sees farther than the 
14 person who supports him." Cephas however spoke to them 
without effect ; they would not deign to render the slightest 
homage to the son of Alcmena. As Tor ourselves, we revered the 
very shores of Spain, where he had killed the three-bodied Ger- 
yon. We crowned our heads with branches of poplar, and, in 
honour of him, poured out some wine of Thasos on the waves. 

We soon discovered the profound and verdant forests which 
cover Celtic Gaul. It was a son of Hercules, called Galate, who 
gave to it's inhabitants the sirname of Galtuians, or Gauls. His 
mother, the daughter of one of the Kings of Celtes, was of a 
prodigious stature, file scorned to take a husband from among 
her father's subjects ; but when Hercules passed through Gaul, 
after the defeat of Geryon, she could not refuse her heart and 
hand to the conqueror of a tyrant. We afterwards entered 
the channel which separates Gaul from the Rf itish Islands, and 
in a few days we reached the mouth of the Seme, the green wa- 
ll ra of which may, at all times, be distinguished from the azure 
a of the Sea. 


My joy was complete. We were upon the point of arriving. 
Our trees were fresh, and covered with leaves. Several of them, 
and among others the slips of the vine, were already loaded 
with ripe fruit : I pictured to myself the joyful reception which 
we wei-e going to receive from a people destitute of the princi- 
pal gifts of Nature, when they should see us disembark upon 
their shores, with the delicate productions of Egypt and of Crete. 
The labours of agriculture are alone sufficient to fix wandering 
and unsettled Nations, and to deprive them of the inclination 
of supporting by violence that life which Nature sustains with 
so many blessings. Nothing more than a grain of corn is re- 
quisite, said I to myself, in order to polish the whole. Gallic Na- 
tion, bv those arts which spring from agriculture. This single 
grain of flax is sufficient, at some future period, to afford them 
clothing. The slip of the vine may serve to diffuse gaiety and 
joy over their festivals, to the latest posterity. I then felt how 
far superior the Works of Nature are to those of Man. These 
last begin to decay the moment that they appear ; the others, 
on the contrary, carry in themselves the spirit of life which pro- 
pagates them. Time, which destroys the monuments of art, 
serves only to multiply those of Nature. I perceived more 
real benefits enclosed in a single grain of seed, than is to be found 
in Egypt in the treasuries oi Tier Kings. 

I gave myself up to these divine and humane speculations, 
and, in the transports of my joy, I embraced Cephas, who had 
given me so justan idea of the real wealth of Nations, and of 
true glory. My friend at the same time observed, that the pilot 
was preparing to stem the current of the Seine, at the entrance 
of which we now were. Night was approaching ; the wind 
blew from the West, and the Horizon was overcast. Cephas 
said to the pilot : " I would advise you no^to enter into the ri- 
" ver, but rather to cast anchor in that porffbeloved of Amphi- 
" trite, which you see upon the left. Listen to what I have 
" heard related on this subject by our ancient seers. 

** Seine, the daughter of BavchiB, and a nymph of Ceres* had 
" followed into Gaul the Goddess of Agriculture, at the time 
" when she was seeking her lost daughter Proserpine, over the 
" whole Earth. When Ceres had finished her career. Seine ask- 



u ed as a reward for her services those meadows which you see 
below. The Goddess consented, and granted besides to the 
" daughter of Bacchus, the power of making corn spring up 
" wherever she set her foot. She then left Seme upon her 
*• shores, and gave her, for a companion and attendant, the 
" nymph Heva, who was charged to keep strict watch over her, 
" lest she should be carried off by some Sea-god, as her daugh- 
" ter Proserpine had been, by the Prince of the infernal re- 
" gions. One day, while Seine was amusing herself, by run- 
" ning along the sands to seek for shells, and as she fled, utter- 
41 ing loud screams before the waves of the Sea, which some- 
" times wet the soles of her feet, and sometimes reached even 
" to her knees, her companion Heva perceived, under the bil- 
** lows, the hoary locks, the empurpled visage, and the azure 
" robe of Neptune. This God was returning from the Orcades, 
" after a terrible earthquake, and was surveying the shores of 
** the Ocean, with his trident, to examine whether their foun- 
" dations not been convulsed. At sight of him, Heva ut- 
" tered a shriek, and warned Seine, who immediately tripped 
" toward the meadows. But the God of the Seas having per- 
" ceived the nymph of Ceres, and being struck with the grace - 
" fulness of her figure, and her agility, drove his sea-horses 
" along the strand in pursuit of her. He had almost overtaken 
" her, when she implored assistance from her father Bacchus, 
" and from Ceres her distress. They both listened to her pe- 
" tition. At the moment that Neptune was extending his arms 
" to catch her, the whole body of Seine melted into water ; her 
11 veil and her green robes, which the wind wafted before her, 
" became waves of an emerald colour. She was transformed 
" into a river of that hue, which still delights to ramble over the 
" places in which she delighted while a nymph. What renders 
11 this more remarflfclc is, that Neptune, notwithstanding her 
" metamorphosis, has not ceased to be enamoured of her, as it 
" is said the river Alpheus injSicily still continues to be, of the 
" fountain of Arethusa. But if the Sea-god has preserved his 
11 affection for Seine, she still continues to retain her aversion 
" for him. Twic( day he pursues her, with a loud and 

" roaring noise, and as often Seine flies to the meadows, as- 
<k cending toward her source, contrary to the natural course of 


" rivers. At all seasons she separates her green waves from 
" the azure billows of Neptune. 

" Heva died with regret for the loss of her mistress J but the 
" Nereids, as a reward to her fidelity, erected to her memory, 
" upon the shore, a monument composed of black and white 
" stones, which may be perceived at a very great distance. By 
" a skill divine, they have even enclosed in it an echo, in order 
" that Heva, after her death, might warn mariners, both by the 
" eye and the ear, of the dangers of the land, as she had during 
u her life cautioned the nymph of Ceres against those of the Sea. 
u You see her tomb from hence. It is that steep mountain, 
" formed of dismal beds of black and white stones. It always 
" bears the name of Heva.* You perceive by those piles of 
" flint-stones with which it's basis is covered, the efforts used 
" by the enraged Neptune to undermine the foundation ; and 
" you may hear from hence, the roaring of the mountain, which 
" warns mariners to take care of themselves. As to Amphitritc, 
" deeply affected by the misfortune of Seine, and die infidelity 
" of Neptune, she intreated the Nereids to hollow out that little 
" bay which you see upon your left, at the mouth of the river; 
" and it was her intention that it should be at all times a secure 
" harbour against the fury of her husband. Enter into it then 
" at this time, if you will be ruled by me, while day-light 
*' remains. I can assure you that I have frequently seen the 
" God of the Seas pursue Seine far up the country, and over- 
" turn every thing Avhich he encountered in his passage. Be on 
" your guard therefore against meeting a God whom love has 
" rendered furious." 

" You must surely," answered the Pilot to Cephas, " take me 
u for a very ignorant Fellov > ou relate such svorics to a 

" person of my age. 1 nice I havt- ibllow- 

:t sea-iife. I have anchored night anJRay in%e Thames, 
" which is full of sands, and in the Tagus, which flows wfch 
" such rapidity ; I have seen the, cataracts of the Nile which 

* There Is in fact r.t the mouth of the Seine, on it's left side bank, a 
i;!' layers of black and while stones, which is railed the 
Hove. ;.s a land-mark for mariners, a::d there is a flag ei 

upon it for giving- signals to ships at Sr-a 


" mak^e a roaring so dreadful, but never have I seen or heard 
" any thing similar to what you have now been relating. I shall 
" hardly be simple enough to remain here at anchor, while the 
" wind is favourable for going up the river. I shall pass the 
" night in it's channel, and expect to sleep very soundly." 

He spoke, and in concert with the sailors raised a hooting, as 
ignorant and presumptuous men are accustomed to do, when ad- 
vice is given them which they do not understand. 

Cephas then approached me, and enquired if I knew how to 
swim. " No," answered I; "I have learnt in Egypt every 
" thing that could render me respectable among men, and al- 
" most nothing which could be useful to myself." He then 
said to me : " Let us not separate from each other ; we will 
" keep close to this bench of the rowers, and repose all our trust 
" in the Gods." 

In the mean time the vessel, driven by the winds, and un- 
doubtedly by the vengeance of Hercules also, entered the river 
in full sail. We avoided, at first, three sand-banks which are 
situated at it's mouth ; afterwards, being fairly involved in the. 
channel, we could see nothing around us but a vast forest, which 
extended down to the very banks of the river. The only evi- 
dence we had of a country inhabited, was some smoke, which 
appeared rising here and there above the trees. We proceeded 
in this manner till night prevented us from distinguishing any 
object; then the pilot thought proper to cast anchor. 

The vessel, driven on one side by a fresh breeze, and on the 
other by the current of the river, was forced into a cross position 
in the channel. But notwithstanding this dangerous situation, 
our sailors began to drink and make merry, believing them- 
selves secure from all danger, because they were surrounded 
with land on every side. They afterwards went to rest, and 
not a single man remained on deck to watch the motions of the 

Cephas and I staid above, seated on one of the rowers' 
benches. We banished sleep from onr eyes, by conversing on 
the majestic appearance of the stars which rolled over our heads. 
Already had the constellation of the Bear reached the middle 
of it's course, when we heard, at a distance, a deep roaring noise, 
like that of a cataract. \ imprudently rose up to see what it 


could be. I perceived, by the whiteness of it's foam, a moun- 
tain of water* which approached us from the Sea, rolling itself 
over and over. It occupied the whole breadth of the river, 
and rushing above it's banks, to the right-hand and to the left, 
broke with a horrible crash among the trunks of the trees of 
the forest. In the same instant it came upon our vessel, and 
taking her side-ways, fairly overset her. This movement tos- 
sed me into the water. A movement afterwards, a second surge 
still more elevated than the former, turned the vessel keel up- 
ward. I recollect that I then heard issue from the inverted wreck, 
a multitude of hollow and stifled screamings : but being desirous 
of calling my friend to my assistance, my mouth filled with salt 
water ; I felt a murmuring noise in my ears ; I found m) self 
carried away with inconceivable rapidity, and soon after I lost 
all recollection. 

I am not sensible how long I might have remained in the 
water, but when I recovered my senses, I perceived toward the 
West the bow of Iris in the Heavens, and to the East the first 
fires of Aurora, which tinged the clouds with silver and ver- 
milion. A company of young girls extremely fair, half clad 
in skins, surrounded me : some of them presented me with li- 
quors in shells, others wiped me dry with mosses, and others 
supported my head with their hands. Their flaxen hair, their 
vermilion cheeks, their azure eyes, and that celestial some- 
what which compassion always portrays on the countenance of 
woman, made me believe that I was in Heaven, and that I was 
attended by the HoitrSj who open the gates of it day by day for 
the admission of unfortunate mortals. The first emotion of 
my heart was to look for you, and the second to enquire after 
you. Oh, Cephas > I could not have felt my happiness com- 
plete, even in Olympus, without your presence. But the illu- 
sion was soon over, when I heard a language barbarous and un- 

* This mountain of water is produced by the tides, which force their way 
from the Sea up the Seine, and make it to flow backward against it's course. 
It is heard coming from a very great distance, especially in the night-time. 
They call it the Bar, because it obstructs the whole course of the Seine. 
This Bar is usually followed by a second Bar still more elevated, which pur- 
sues it at the distance of about a hundred fathom. They run n 
at full speed. 


known to me, issue from the rosy lips of these young females. I 
then recollected by degrees the circumstances of my shipwreck. 
I arose: I wished to seek for you, but knew not where to find 
you again. I wandered about in the midst of the woods. I 
was ignorant whether the river, in which we had been ship- 
wrecked, was near, or at a distance, on my right hand, or on 
my left ; and to increase my embarrassment, there was no per- 
son of whom I could enquire it's situation. 

After having reflected a short time, I observed that the grass 
was wet, and the foliage of the trees of a bright green, from 
which I concluded that it must have rained abundantly die pre- 
ceding night. I was confirmed in this idea by the sight of die 
water, which still flowed in yellow currents along the roads. I 
farther concluded that these waters must, of necessity, empty 
themselves into some brook, and this brook into the river. I 
was about to follow these indications, when some men, who 
came out of an adjoining cottage, compelled me with a threaten- 
ing tone to enter. I then perceived that I was free no longer, 
and that I had become the slave of a people, who, I once flat- 
tered myself, would have honoured me as a God. 

I call Jupiter to witness, oh, Cephas ! that the affliction of 
having been shipwrecked in port, of seeing myself reduced to 
servitude by those for whose benefit I had travelled so far, of 
being relegated to a barbarous country where I could make 
myself understood by no person, far from the delightful country 
of Egypt, and from my relations, did not equal the distress 
which I felt in having lost you. I called to remembrance the 
wisdom of jour counsels ; your confidence in the Gods, of 
whose providence you taught me to be sensible even in the 
midst of the greatest calamities ; your observations on the 
Works of Nature, which replenished her to me with life and 
benevolence ; the tranquillity in which you so well knew how to 
maintain all my passions : and I felt, by the gloom which was 
gathering around my heart, that I had lost in you the first of 
ings, and that a prudent friend is the most valuable gift 
which the bounty of the Gods can bestow upon Man. 

Thus, I thought of nothing but of the means of regaining you 
once more, and I flattered myself that I should succeed, bv 
making my escape in the middle of the night, if I could only 

Vol. III. Bb 


reach the sea-coast. I was persuaded that I could not be far 
distant from it, but I was entirely ignorant on which side it 
lay. There was no eminence near me from whence I could 
discover it. Sometimes I mounted to the summit of the mos, 
lofty trees, but I could perceive nothing except the surface of 
the forest, which extended as far as the Horizon. Often did I 
watch the flight of the birds, to see if I could discover some sea- 
fowl coming on shore to build her nest in the forest ; or some 
wild pigeon going to pilfer salt from the shores of the Ocean. 
I would a thousand times have preferred the sound of the pier- 
cing cries of the sea-thrush, when she comes during a tempest 
to shelter herself among the rocks, to the melodious voice of 
the red-breast, which already announced, in the yellow foliage 
of the woods, the termination of the fine weather. 

One night after I had retired to rest, I thought I heard at 
distance the noise which the waves of the Sta make, when 
they break upon it's shores ; that I could even distinguish the 
tumult of the waters of the Seine pursued by Neptune. Their 
roarings, which had formerly chilled me with horror, at that 
transport y. 1 arose : I went out of the cot- 

tag.:, and listened attentively ; but the sounds, which seemed to 
issue from various parts of the Horizon, soon perplexed my un- 
derstanding: I began to discover that it was the murmurings 
of the winds, which agitated at a distance the foliage of the 
oaks, and of the beech-trees. 

Sometimes I endeavoured to make the savages of my cottage 
comprehend that I had lost a friend. I applied my hand to 
my eyes, to my mouth, and to my heart ; I pointed to the Hori- 
zon, I raised my hands clasped to Heaven, and shed tears. 
They understood this dumb language, by which I expressed 
my affliction, for they wept with me ; but, by a contradiction 
for which I could not account, they redoubled their precautions 
to prevent me from making my escape. 

I applied myself therefore to learn their language, that I might 
inform them of my condition, and in order to interest them in 
it. They were themselves eagerly disposed to teach me the 
names of the objects which I pointed out to them. Slavery is 
Very mild among these Nations. My life, liberty excepted, dif- 
fered in nothing from that of my masters. Every thing was in 


common between us, provision, habitation, and the earth upon 
which we slept wrapped up in skins. They had even so much 
consideration for my youth, as to give me the easiest part of 
their labours to perform. In a short time I was able to converse 
with them. This is what I learnt of their government and cha- 

Gaul is peopled with a great number of petty Nations, some 
of which are governed by Kings, others by chiefs, called Iarles ; 
but all subjected to the power of thtr Druids, who unite them 
all under the same religion, and govern them with so much the 
greater facility, that they are divided by a thousand different cus- 
toms. The Druids have persuaded these Nations that they are 
descended from Pluto, the God of the infernal Regions, whom 
they call Hceder, or the Blind. This is the reason that the 
Gauls reckon by nights and not by days, and that they reckon 
the hours of the day from the middle of the night, contrary to 
the practice of all other Nations. They adore several other 
Gods as terrible as Herder ; such as Niorder, the master of the 
winds, who dashes vessels on their coasts, in order they say to 
procure them plunder. They accordingly believe, that every 
ship which is wrecked upon their shores is sent them by Nior- 
der. They have besides, Thor, or Theutates, the God of War, 
armed with a club, which he darts from the upper regions of the 
air ; they give him gloves of iron, and a belt, which redoubles 
his fury when it is girded around him. Tir, equally cruel ; 
the silent Vidar, who wears shoes of considerable thickness, by 
means of which he can walk through the air, and upon the wa- 
ter, without making any noise ; Ilemdal, with the golden tooth, 
who sees day and night : he can hear the slightest sound, even 
that which the grass or the wool makes as they grow : Duller, 
the God of the Ice, shod with skates ; Loke, who had three chil- 
dren by the giantess Angherbodc, the messenger of grief, namely, 
the wolf Fcnris, the serpent of Midgard, and the merciless Hela* 
ffela is death. They say that his palace is misery ; his table, 
(amine ; his door, the precipice ; his porch, languor ; and his bed, 
imption. They have besides several other Gods, whose ex- 
. are as ferocious as their names, Hcrian, Rijiiadi, Svidur, 
; which translated, mean the warrior, the thun- 
he incendiary, the father of carnage. The 


Druids honour these Divinities,* with funeral ceremonies, la- 
mentable ditties, and human sacrifices. This horrible mode of 
worship gives them so much power over the terrified spirits of 
the Gauls, that they preside in all their councils, and decide 
upon all their affairs. If any one presumes to oppose their judg- 
ment, he is excluded from the communion of their mysteries ; j 
and from that moment he is abandoned by every one, not except- 
ing his own wife and children ; but it seldom happens that any 
one ventures to resist them ; for they arrogate to themselves, ex- 
clusively, the charge of educating youth, that they may impress 
upon their minds early in life, and in a manner never to be effa- 
ced, these horrible opinions. 

As for the Iarles, or Nobles, they have the power of life and 
death over their own vassals. Those who live under Kings pay 
them the half of the tribute which is levied upon the commonalty. 
Others govern them entirely to their own advantage. The rich- 
er sort give feasts to the poor of their own particular class, who 
accompany them to the wars, and make it a point of honour to 
die by their side. They are extremely brave. If in hunting 
they encounter a bear, the Chief amongst them lays aside his 
arrows, attacks the animal alone, and kills him with one stroke 
of his cutlass. If the fire catches their habitation, they never 
quit it till they see the burning joists ready to fall upon them. 
Others, on the brink of the Ocean, with lance or sword in hand, 
oppose themselves to the waves which dash upon the' shore. 
They suppose valour to consist, not only in resisting their ene- 
mies of the human species, and ferocious animals, but even the 
elements themselves. Valour with them supplies the place of 
justice. They always decide their differences by force of arms, 
and consider reason as the resource of those only who are des- 
titute of courage. These two classes of citizens, one of which 
employs cunning, and the other force, to make themselves fear- 
ed, completely balance each other ; but they unite in tyrannizing 

* Respecting' the manners and mythology of the ancient Nations of the 
North, Herodotus may be consulted, the Commentaries of Cesar, Suetonius, Ta- 
citus, the Eda of Mr. Mallet, and the Swedish Collections, translated by the 
Chevalier de Keralio. 

f Cesar says precisely the same thing' in his Commentari 


over the people, whom they treat with sovereign contempt. 
Never can a plebeian among the Gauls arrive at the honour of 
filling any public station. It would appear that this Nation ex- 
ists only for it's Priests and it's Nobles. Instead of being con- 
soled by the one, and protected by the other, as justice requires, 
the Druids terrify them, only in order that the Iaries may op- 
press them. 

Notwithstanding all this, there is no race of men possessed 
of better qualities than the Gauls. They are very ingenious, and 
excel in several species of useful arts which are to be found no 
where else. They overlay plates of iron with tin,* so artfully, 
that it might pass for silver. They compact pieces of wood 
with so much exactness, that they form of them vases capable 
of containing all sorts of liquors. What is still more wonderful, 
they have a method of boiling water in them without their be- 
ing consumed. They make flint stones red-hot, and throw them 
into the water contained in the wooden vase ? till it acqukes the 
degree of heat which they wish to give it. 'They also know how 
to kindle fire without making use either of steel or of flint, by 
the friction of the wood of the ivy and of the laurel. The qua- 
lities of their heart are still superior to those of their under- 
standing. They are extremely hospitable. He who has little, 
divides that little cheerfully with him who has nothing. They 
are so passionately fond of their children that they never treat 
them unkindly. They are contented with bringing them back 
to a sense of their duty by remonstrance. The result from this 
conduct is, that at all times the most tender affection unites all 
the members of their families, and that the young people there 
listen, with the greatest respect, to the counsels of the aged. 

Nevertheless, this People would be speedily destroyed by the 
tyranny of it's Chieftains, did they not oppose their own pas- 
sions to themselves. When quarrels arise among the Nobility, 

* The Laplanders understand the art of wire-drawing tin to a very high 
in general an ex 
n :.!l the arts practised by savage Nations. The canoes and the ra- 
es of the Esquimaux ; the pros of the islanders of tin. South-Sea; the 
the hooks, the bows, \\ , the stone hatchets, the ha- 

te head-dresses of most of those Nations, ha 

bes the invention of casks to :1a. 
He praises their tin 


they are so much under the persuasion that arms must decide 
the controversy, and that reason has no voice in the decision, 
that they are obliged, in order to merit popular esteem, to fol- 
low up their resentments to the death. This vulgar prejudice 
is fatal to a great number of the Iarles. On the other hand, 
they give such credit to the dreadful stories retailed by the 
Druids, respecting their Divinities, and fear, as is generally the 
case, associates with these traditions circumstances so terrify- 
ing, that the Priests frequently tremble much more than the 
people, before the idols which they themselves had fabricated. 
I am thence thoroughly convinced of the truth of the maxim of 
our sacred books, which says — Jupiter has ordained, that the 
evil which a man does to his fellow-creature should recoil, with 
seven-fold vengeance, upon himself, that no one may find his 
own happiness in the misery of another. 

There are here and there among some of the Gallic Nations, 
Kingsjvho establish their own authority by undertaking the de- 
fence of the weak ; but it is the women who preserve the Na- 
tion from ruin. Equally oppressed by the Laws of the Druids, 
and by the ferocious manners of the Iarles, they are doomed 
to the most painful offices, such as cultivating the ground, beat- 
ing about in the woods to start game for their huntsmen, and 
carrying the baggage of the men on their journeys. They are 
besides subjected, all their life long, to the imperious govern- 
ance of their own children. Every husband has the power of 
life and death over his wife, and when he dies, if there arises 
the slightest suspicion that his death was not natural, they put 
his wife to the torture : If through the violence of her torments 
she pleads guilty, she is condemned to the flames.* 

This unfortunate sex triumphs over it's tyrants by their own 
opinions. As vanity is their domineering passion, the women 
turn them into ridicule. A song simply is in their hands suffi- 
cient to destroy the result of their gravest assemblies. The 
lower classes, and especially the young people, always devoted 
to their service, set this song into circulation through the vil- 
lages and hamlets. It is sung day and night : he who is the 
subject of it, be he who he may, dares to shew his face no m 


Hence it comes to pass that the women, so weak as individuals, 
enjoy collectively the most unlimited power. Whether it be 
the fear of ridicule, or that they have experienced the superior 
discernment of their women, but certain it is the Chieftains un- 
dertake nothing of importance, without consulting them. Their 
voice decides whether it is to be peace or war. As they are 
obliged, by the miseries of Society, to renounce their own opi- 
nions, and to take refuge in the arms of Nature, they are neither 
blinded nor hardened by the prejudices of the men. Hence it 
happens, that they judge more clearly than the other sex of pub- 
lic affairs, and foresee future events with such superior discern- 
ment. The common people, whose calamities they solace, struck 
at frequently finding in them a more discriminating understand- 
ing than in their Chiefs, without penetrating into the causes of 
it, take a pleasure in ascribing to them something divine.* 

Thus the Gauls pass successively and rapidly from sorrow to 
fear, and from fear to joy. The Druids terrify them, dietaries 
abuse them, and the women make them laugh, dance and sing. 
Their religion, their laws and their manners, being perpetually 
at variance, they live in a state of continual fluctuation, which 
constitutes their principal character. Hence also may be derived 
the reason why they are so very curious about news, and so 
ch sirous of knowing what passes among strangers. It is 
for this reason, that so many are to be found in foreign coun- 
tries, which they are fond of visiting, like all men who are un- 
happy at home. 

They despise husbandmen, and of consequence neglect agri- 
culture, which is the basis of public prosperity. When we land- 
ed in their country, they cultivated only those grains which 
come to perfection in the space of a Summer, such as beans, 
lcntiles, oats, small millet, rye and barley. Very little wheat is 
to be seen there. Nevertheless the earth abounds with natural 
productions. There is a profusion of excellent pastui-e by the 
side of the rivers. The forests are lofty, and filled with fruit- 
trees of all kinds. As they were frequently in want of provi- 
sion, they employed me in seeking it for them, in the fields and 
in the woods. I found in the meadows cloves of garlic, the 

* CoiMi on the Manner* of the Germans 


roots of the daucus, and of the drop-wort. I sometimes re- 
turned loaded with myrtle-berries, beech-masts, plums, pears 
and apples, which I had gathered in the forest. They dressed 
these fruits, the greater part of which cannot be eaten raw, on 
account of their harshness. But they have trees there which 
produce fruit of an exquisite flavour. I have often admired the 
apple-trees, loaded with fruits of a colour so brilliant that they 
might have been mistaken for the most beautiful flowers. 

This is what they related respecting the origin of those apple- 
trees, which grow there in such abundance, and of the greatest 
beauty. They tell vou, that the beautiful Thetis, whom they 
called Friga, jealous of this circumstance, that at her nuptials, 
Venus, whom they denominate Siofne, had carried away the ap- 
ple which was the prize of beauty, without putting it in her 
power to contest it with the three Goddesses, resolved to avenge 


Accordingly, one day that Venus had descended on this part 
of the Gallic shore, in quest of pearls for her dress, and of the 
shells called the knife-handle for her son Sisione* a tnton stole 
away her apple, which she had deposited upon a rock, and car- 
ried it to the Goddess of the Seas. Thetis immediately planted 
it's seeds in the neighbouring country, to perpetuate the memo- 
ry of her revenge, and of her triumph. This is the reason, 
say the Celtic Gauls, of the great number of apple-trees which 
grow in their Country, and of the singular beauty of their 
young women.f 

* The Gauls, as well as the Nations of the North, called Venus, Siofne, and 
Cupid, Sisione. Consult the Eda. The most formidable weapon anion- the 
Celt* was neither the bow, nor the sword, but the cutlass. They armed the 
Dwarfs with it; who, thus equipped, triumphed over the sword of the Gi- 
ants. The enchantment made with a dagger was incapable of being- dissolved. 
It was fit, therefore, that the Gaulish Cupid should be armed, not with a bow 
and a quiver, but with a dagger. The dagger-handles in question are two- 
valvcd fish-shells, lengthened out into the form of a dagger-handle, the name 
of which they bear. They are found in great abundance along the shores of 
Normandy, where they bury themselves in the sand. 

f And perhaps of the law-suits for which Normandy is famous, as that ap. 
pie was originally a present of discord. It might be possible to find out a 
cause less remote of these suits at Law, in the prodigious number of pctty 
iurisdictions with which that province is filled, in their litigious usages, and 


Winter came on, and I am unable to express my astonish- 
ment to you, when I beheld, for the first time, the Heavens dis- 
solve into white plumage resembling that of birds, the water of 
the fountains become hard as stone, and the trees entirely strip- 
ped of their foliage. I had hever seen the like in Egypt. I 
had no doubt but that the Gauls would immediately expire, like 
the plants and the elements of their Country ; and undoubtedlv 
the rigour of the climate wuuld soon put an end to my career 
had they not taken the greatest care to clothe me with furs. But 
how easy it is for a person without experience to be deceived ! 
I was entirely ignorant of the resources of Nature ; for every 
season, as well as for every climate. Winter is to those Nor- 
thern Nations, a time of festivity and of abundance. The river- 
birds, the elks, the buffaloes, the hares, the deer and the wild- 
boars, abound at that season in the forest, and approach their 
habitations. They killed these in prodigious quantities. 

I was not less surprised when I beheld the return of Spring, 
which displayed in those desolate regions a magnificence which 
I had never seen before, even on the banks of the Nile : the 
bramble, the raspberry, the sweet-briar, the strawberry, the 
primrose, the violet, and a great many other flowers unknown 
in Egypt, adorned the verdant borders of the forests. Some, 
such as the honeysuckle, entwined themselves round the trunks 
of the oaks, and suspended from the boughs their perfumed 
garlands. The shores, the rocks, the woods and the mountains, 
were all clothed in a pomp at once magnificent and wild. A 
spectacle so affecting redoubled my melancholy: "Happy," 

especially in the European spirit of Education, which says to every man from 

his childhood upward : Be the first. 

It would not he so easy to discover the moral or physical causes of the 

Larly remarkable beauty of the women of the Pays de Caux, especially 

among- the country girls. They have blue eyes, a delicacy of features, a 

freshness of complexion, and a shape which would do honour to the finest 

about Court. I know but of one other canton in the whole kingdom, 

in which the women of the lower classes are equally beautiful. It is at Avig- 

y there however presents a different character. They have large, 

black and soft ryes, aquiline noses, and the heads of .Angelica Kuitffmun. 

• Philosophy think propel- C> take up the question, we may allow 

son for the beamy of their young 
i by a fable which the Creeks would not perhaps have rejected. 

Vm. III. C c 


said I to myself, " if I could perceive among so many plants, u 
" single one of those which I brought with me from Egypt ! 
" were it only the humble flax, it would recal the memory of 
" my Country, during my whole life-time ; in dying, I would 
" select it for the place of my grave : it would one day tell Cc-t 
" pkas where the bones of his friend repose, and inform the 
" Gauls of the name and of the travels of Amasis" 

One day, as I was endeavouring to dissipate my melancholy, 
by looking at the young girls dancing on the fresh grass, one of 
them quitted the dancers, and came and wept over me : then, on 
a sudden, she again joined her companions, and continued to 
dance, frisking about and amusing herself with them. I took 
the sudden transition from joy to grief, and from grief to joy, 
in this young girl, to be the effect of the natural levity of the 
peopic, and I did not give myself much trouble about it; when 
I saw an old man issue from the forest, with a red beard, cloth- 
ed in a robe m:tde of the skins of weasels. He bore a branch 
of mistletoe in his hand, and at his girdle hung a knife of flint. 
He was followed by a company of young persons in the flower 
of their age, who had girdles of the same sort of skins, and 
Holding in their hands empty gourds, pipes of iron, bullocks' 
horns, and other instruments of their barbarous music. 

As soon as this old man appeared the dancing ceased, every 
countenance became sad, and the whole company removed to a 
distance from me. Even my master and his family retired to 
their cottage. The wicked old man then approached me, and 
fastened a leathern cord round my neck ; then his satellites forc- 
ing me to follow him, dragged me along in a state of stupefac- 
tion, in the same manner as wolves would carry off a sheep. 
They conducted me across the forest to the very borders of the 
Seine : there the Chief sprinkled me with the water of the ri- 
ver ; he then made me enter into a large boat, constructed of 
the bark of the birch-tree, into which he likewise embarked 
with all his train. 

We sailed up the Seine for eight days together, during which 
every one observed a profound silence. On the ninth, we ar- 
rived at a little town built in the middle of an island. -They 
here made me disembark on the opposite shore, on the 1 
hand bank of the river, and they conducted me into a large hut 


without windows, which was illuminated by torches of fir. 
They tied me to a stake in the middle of the hut, and those 
young men, who watched over me night and day armed with 
hatchets of flint, never ceased to dance around me, blowing, 
with all their strength, through the bulls' horns and iron pipes* 
They accompanied this detestable music with these horrible 
words, which they sung in chorus. 

" Oh, Niorder! Oh, Rifiindi ! Oh, Svidrer! Oh, Hela! Oh, 
" Hela ! God of Carnage and of Storms, we bring thee flesh. 
" Receive the blood of this victim, of this child of death. Oh, 
" Niorder! Oh, Rifiindi! Oh, Svidrer ! Oh, Hela! Oh, Hela!" 

Whilst they pronounced these awful words, their eyes rolled 
about in their heads, and their mouths foamed. At length those 
fanatics, overwhelmed with fatigue, fell asleep, except one of 
them who was called Omfi. This name, in the Celtic tongue, 
signifies beneficent. Omfi, moved with compassion, approached 
me : " Unfortunate young man," said he, " a cruel war has 
" broken out between the Nations of Great- Britain and those 
" of Gaul. The Britons pretend to be the masters of the Sea 
" which separates their island from us. We have already been 
" defeated by them in two naval engagements. The College 
H of the Druids of Chartres has determined, that human victims 
** are necessary to render Mars favourable, whose temple is 
" just by this place. The Chief of the Druids, who has spies 
" over all the Gauls, has discovered that the tempests had cast 
" you upon our coasts : he went himself to find you out. He 
" is old and pitiless. He bears the name of two of our most 
u formidable Deities. He is called Tor-Tir.* Repose thy 
" confidence then in the Gods of thy own Country, for those of 
" Gaul demand thy blood." 

I was seized with such terror, that I was unable to make the 
least reply to Omfi : I only thanked him by an inclination of my 
head, and he immediately hastened from mc, lest he should be 
perceived by any of his companions. 

At that moment I called to mind the reason which induced the 
Gauls, who had made me their slave, to hinder me from remov- 

:iv bo from the names of those two cruel Gods of the North, 


ing from their habitation ; they were apprehensive that I might 
fall into the hands of the Druids ; but I had not the power of 
escaping my cruel destiny. My destruction now appeared so 
inevitable in my own eyes, that I did not believe Jupiter him- 
self was able to deliver me from the jaws of those tigers, who 
were thirsting for my blood. I recollected no more, oh, Cephas! 
what you have so frequently told me, That the Gods never 
abandon innocence. I did not even remember their having 
saved me from shipwreck. Present danger totally obliterates 
past deliverance from the mind. Sometimes I imagined that 
they had preserved me from the waves, only to give me up to a 
death a thousand times more painful. 

Nevertheless I addressed my supplications to Jupiter, and I 
enjoyed a kind of repose, in relying entirely on that Providence 
which governs the World, when all of a sudden the doors of 
the cottage opened, and a numerous company of Priests enter- 
ed, with Tor-' Fir at their head, always bearing in his hand a 
branch of mistletoe from the oak. Immediately the young bar- 
barians who surrounded me awoke, and began their funeral songs 
and dances. Tor-Tir approached me; he placed upon my 
head a crown of the yew-tree, and a handful of the meal of 
beans ; afterwards he put a gag in my mouth, and having un- 
tied me from my stake, he fastened my hands behind my back. 
Then all his retinue began to march to the sound of their dole- 
ful instruments, and two Druids, supporting me by the arms, 
conducted me to the place of sacrifice. 

Here Tyrteus perceiving that the spindle fell from the hand^ 
of Cyanea, and that she turned pale, said to her : " My daugh- 
" ter, it is time for you to go to rest. Remember that you must 
" rise to-morrow before the dawn, to go to Mount Lyceum, 
" where you have to present, with your companions, the shep- 
" herd's offering on the altar of Jupiter." Cyanea, trembling 
all over, replied : "My father, every thing is ready against the 
" festival of to-morrow. The wreathes of flowers, the wheaten 
" cakes, the vessels of milk, are all prepared. But it is not 
" late : the moon has not as yet illuminated the bottom of the 
" valley, nor have the cocks yet crowed ; it is not midnight. 
" Allow me I entreat you to stay here till the end of this story. 
4t My father, I am near you, and I shall apprehend no danger." 


Tyrteus looked at his daughter with a smile ; and having 
made an apology to Amasis for interrupting him, entreated he 
would proceed. 

He went out of the hut, replied Amasis, in the middle of a 
dark night, by the smoky light of fir-torches. We traversed at 
first a vast field of stones ; we saw here and there the skeletons 
of horses and of dogs, fixed upon stakes. From thence we ar- 
rived at the entrance of a large cavern, hollowed in the side of 
a rock all over white.* The lumps of black clotted blood which 
had been shed around, exhaled an infectious smell, and announ- 
ced this to be the Temple of Mars. In the interior of this fright- 
ful den, along the walls, were ranged human heads and bones ; 
and in the middle of it, upon a piece of rock, a statue of iron 
reared itself to the summit of the cavern, representing the- god 
Mars. It was so misshapen, that it had more resemblance 
to a block of rusty iron than to the God of war. We could dis- 
tinguish however his club, set thick with piercing points, his 
gloves studded with the heads of nails, and his horrible girdle, 
on which was portrayed the image of Death. At his feet was 
seated the King of the Country, having around him the princi- 
pal personages of his State. An immense crowd of people were 
collected within and without the cavern, who preserved a me- 
lancholy silence, impressed with respect, religion and terror. 

Tor-Tir, addressing himself to the whole assembly, said: 
" Oh King, and you Iarles assembled for the defence of the 
" Gauls, do not believe that you ever can triumph over your 
" enemies without the assistance of the God of Battles. Your 
" losses have demonstrated what is the consequence of neglect- 
u ing his awful worship. Blood offered up to the Gods, saves 
" the effusion of that which mortals shed. The Gods ordain 
" men to be born, only that they may die. Oh ! how happy 
M are you, that the selection of the victim has not fallen upon 

* Montmartre is mcar.t, 'tit. It is well known that this vising- 

I, dedicat s formed of a rock of plas- 

Otliera it is t.-u< of M ontmjrtre from Mom Martyr urn. 

econciled. If there were, in an- 
cient t rs o.. th.3 mountain, it was pr jbab'y owhi£ 
to it's I idol, to which they were ther. 


" one of yourselves ! Whilst I was considering within myself. 
" v hose life among us would be acceptable to the Gods, and 
" ready to offer up my own for the good of my Country, Nior- 
*' der, the God of the Seas, appeared to me in the gloomy for- 
" ests of Chartres ; he was dripping all over with sea-water. 
" He said to me in a voice thundering like the tempest : I send 
" to you, for the salvation of the Gauls, a stranger, without re- 
" lations, and without friends. I myself dashed him upon the 
" western shores. His blood will be acceptable to the Gods of 
" the infernal regions. Thus spake Niorder. Niorcfer loves 
" you, oh, ye children of Pluto .'" 

Scarcely had Tor-Tir made an end of this terrible address, 
when a Gaul who was seated by the King, rushed toward me : 
it was Cephas. " Oh, Amasis ! oh, my dear Amasis .'" cried 
he. " Oh, my barbarous compatriots ! are you going to sacri- 
" fice a man, who has come from the banks of the Nile to bring 
" you the most precious blessings of Greece and of Egypt? 
" You shall begin then with me, who first inspired him with 
" this desire, and who touched his heart with pity for the per- 
u sons so cruel to him." As he pronounced these words, he 
pressed me in his arms, and bathed me with his tears. For 
my part, I wept and sobbed, without the power of expressing 
to him, in any other way, the transports of my joy. Immedi- 
ately the cavern resounded with the voice of murmurs and of 
groans. The young Druids wept, and let fall from their hands 
the instruments of my sacrifice : for Religion becomes mute 
whenever Nature speaks. Nevertheless, no one in the assem- 
bly durst even now deliver me from the hands of the butcher- 
ing priests, when the women, rushing into the midst of the as- 
sembly, tore asunder my chains, and removed my gag and fu- 
neral crown. Thus, for the second time, did I owe my life to 
the women of Gaul. 

The King, taking me in his arms, said : " What, is it you, 
" unhappy stranger, whom Cephas has been incessantly regret- 
" ting ! Oh, ye Gods, the enemies of my Country, do you send 
" benefactors hither only that they may be immolated !" Then, 
addressing himself to the Chiefs of the Nations, he spoke with so 
much energy of the rights of humanity, that with one accord 
they all swore, that they would never more reduce to slavery 


those whom the tempest might cast upon their shores ; never to 
sacrifice, in future, any one innocent man, and to offer to Mars 
only the blood of the criminal. Tor-Tir, in a rage, endeavour- 
ed in vain to oppose this law : he retired, menacing the King 
and all the Gauls with the approaching vengeance of the Gods. 

Nevertheless the King, accompanied by my friend, conduct- 
ed me amidst the acclamations of the People into his city, 
which was situated in the neighbouring island. Till the mo- 
ment of our arrival in this island, I had been so much discom- 
posed that I was incapable of a single rational reflection. Every 
species of new representation of my misfortunes contracted my 
heart, and obscured my understanding. But as soon as I re- 
covered the use of my reasoning powers, and began to reflect 
on the extreme danger which I had just escaped, I fainted 
away. Oh, how weak is man in a paroxysm of joy ! He is 
strong only to encounter woe. Cephas brought me to myself 
after the manner of the Gauls, by shaking about my head, and 
blowing on my face. 

When I had recovered my senses, he took my hands in his, 
and said to me : " Oh, my friend, how many tears you have cost 
" me ! When the waves of the Ocean which overset our vessel, 
" had separated us, I found myself cast, I know not how, upon 
" the right-hand bank of the Seine. My first care was to seek 
u for you. I kindled fires upon the shore ; I called you by 
" name ; I employed several of my compatriots who had ga- 
" thcred together on hearing my cries, to reconnoitre, in their 
" boats, the banks of the river, to see if they could not find 
" you ; all our researches were ineffectual. The day re-appear- 
" ed, and presented to my view our vessel overturned, and hei 
" keel in the air, close to the shore where I was. It never oc- 
" curred to my thoughts that you might have landed on the op- 
" posite shore, in my own country Belgium. It was not till 
" the third day, that believing you had perished, I resolved to 
" pass over to it, to visit my relations. The greatest part of 
" them had paid the debt of Nature during my absence : those 
" who remained overwhelmed me with kindness ; but not even 
u a brother can compensate for the loss of a friend. I return 
" ed almost immediately to the other side of the river. There 
" they unloaded our unfortunate vessel, of which nothing had 


" been lost but the men. I sought your body along the sea- 
** shore, and I repeated my demand of it evening, morning, and 
w in the middle of the night from the nymphs of the Ocean, 
u that I might rear you a monument near to that of Heva. I 
" should have passed all my life I believe in these vain resear- 
iC ches, had not the King, who reigns on the banks of this river, 
" informed that a Phenician vessel was wrecked on his domains, 
" claimed the property, which according to the laws of the 
" Gauls belonged to him. I collected accordingly every thing 
" which we had brought from Egypt, even to the very trees, 
" which had not been damaged by the water ; and I presented 
" myself,, with these wretched fragments, before that Prince. 
" Let us bless then the providence of the Gods, which has united 
" us again, and which has rendered your misfortunes more use- 
" ful to my Country than even your presents. If you had not 
" made shipwreck on our coasts, the barbarous custom of con- 
" demning to slavery those who endure that calamity, would 
" not have been abolished ; and if you had not been condemned 
" to be sacrificed, I should most probably never have seen you 
" more, and the blood of the innocent would still have smoked 
" upon the altars of the God of War." 

Thus spake Cephas. As for the King, he omitted nothing 
which he thought would tend to make me lose the recollection 
of my misfortunes. He was called Bardus. He was already 
considerably advanced in years, and he wore, according to the 
custom of his people, his beard and hair very long. His palace 
was built of the trunks of firs, laid in rows one upon another. It 
had no other door* except large bullocks' hides, which closed 
up the apertures. No person was there on guard, for he had 
nothing to fear from his subjects ; but he had employed all his 
skill and industry to fortify his city against enemies from with- 

* Gates were a matter of very difficult construction to savage tribes, who 
did not understand the use of the saw, without which it was almost impossi- 
ble to reduce a tree into planks. Accordingly, when they abandoned a Coun- 
try, those who had gates carried them off with them. A Norwegian hero, 
whose name I do not at present recollect, he who discovered Greenland, 
threw his into the Sea, in order to discover where the Destinies intended to 
fix his residence ; and he made a settlement good on that part of Greenland 
to which they were wafted. Gates and their threshold were, and =till are. 
I d in the East. 


out. He had surrounded it with walls, formed of the trunks of 
trees, intermixed with sods of turf, with towers of stone at the 
angles and at the gates. Sentinels were stationed on the top of 
these towers, who watched day and night. King Bardus had 
received this island from the nymph Lutetia his mother, and it 
bore her name. It was at first discovered with nothing but 
trees, and Bardus had not a single subject. He employed him- 
self in twisting, upon the banks of the island, ropes of the b 
of the lime-tree, and in hollowing alders to make boats. He 
sold these productions of his own hands to the mariners who 
sailed up or down the Seine. While he worked, he sung the 
advantages of industry and of commerce, which unite together 
all mankind. The boatmen-frcquently stopped to listen to his 
songs. The were repeated, and spread throughout all the Gauls, 
among whom they were known under the name of the verses ot 
the Bards. Soon after a great number of people came to estab- 
lish themselves in this island to hear him sing, and to live in 
greater security. His riches accumulated with his subjects. 
The island was covered with habitations, the neighbouring for- 
ests were cleared, and in a short time numerous flocks covered 
both the adjacent shores. It was in this manner that the good 
King formed an empire without violence. But while as yet his 
island was not surrounded by walls, and while he was aire ad} 
planning to make it the centre of commerce for all the Nations * 
of Gaul, war was on the point of exterminating all it's inha- 

One day, a great number of warriors who were sailing up the 
Seine, in canoes made of the bark of the elm, disembarked upon 
it's northern shore, directly opposite to Lutetia. They were 
under the command of the Iarle Canvtt, third son of Tended 
Prince of the North. Gamut was on his return irom laying- 
waste all the coasts of the Hyperborean Sea, over which he had 
spread horror and devastation. He was secretly favoured in 
Gaul by the Druids, who, like all weak men, take the side of 
(linse who have rendered themselves formidable. As soon as 
■it had landed, he went in search of King Bardus, and said : 
• Let us fight, thou and I, at the head of our warriors : the 
iker shall obey the strongest ; for it is the first Law of 

Vol. III. Dd 


" ture that every thing should yield to force." King Bar dim 
replied : " Oh, Carnut 1 If the point in dispute were the ha- 
" zarding of my own life, for the defence of my people, I would 
" without hesitation expose it. But I will not expose the lives 
" of my people, were it even to save my own. It is goodness 
" and not force which ought to be the choice of Kings. It is 
" goodness only which governs the World, and it employs for 
" that purpose intelligence and strength, which are subordinate 
" to it, as are all the other Powers of the Universe. Valiant 
" son of Tended, since thou wishest to govern men, let us try, 
" whether of the two, you or I, is the most capable of doing 
" them good. Behold these poor Gauls entirely naked. With- 
" out making offensive comparisons, I have several times clothed 
" and fed them, even to the denying myself clothes and food. 
u Let us see what provision thou wilt make for their wants." 

Carnut accepted the challenge. It was now Autumn. He 
went to the chace with his warriors ; he killed a great number 
of birds, stags, elks and wild boars. He afterwards, with the 
flesh of these animals, gave a great feast to the inhabitants of 
Luit-tia, and clothed in their skins those who were naked. King 
Bardus said to him : " Son of Tendal, thou art a mighty hunts* 
" man : thou wilt be able to support the people during the hunt-- 
" ing season ; but in Spring, and during Summer time, they 
" will perish with hunger. For my part, with my corn, the 
u fleeces of my sheep, and the milk of my flocks, I can maintain 
" them throughout the whole year." 

Carnut made no reply ; but he remained encamped with his 
warriors upon the banks of the river, and refused to withdraw, 

Bardus perceiving his obstinacy went to seek him in his turn, 
and proposed a second challenge to him : " Valour," said he, 
" is the quality of a warlike Chief, but patience is still more 
" necessary to Kings. Since thou wishest to reign, let us 
" try which of us can carry this ponderous log the longest." It 
was the trunk of an oak of thirty years old. Carnut took it on 
his back, but soon losing patience hastily threw it down again. 
Bardus laid it across his shoulders, and bore it without moving, 
till after sun-set, and even till the night was far advanced. 

Nevertheless Carnut and his warriors would uot depart. 
They thus passed the whole Winter employed in hunting, The 


Spring returned, and they threatened to destroy a rising city, 
which refused to do them homage ; and they became still great- 
er objects of terror, as they began to be in total want of food. 
Bardus did not know how to rid himself of them, for they 
were the most powerful. In vain did he consult the most aged 
of his people ; no one could give him advice. At last he laid 
his distress before his mother Lutetia, who was now very old, 
but who still possessed an excellent understanding. 

Lutetia said to him : " My son, you are acquainted with a 
" great number of ancient and curious histories, which I taught 
u you in your infancy; you excel in singing: Challenge the 
" son of Tended to a competition in song with you." 

Bardus went and found out Carnut, and said : " Son of Ten- 
" dal, it is not sufficient for a King to maintain his subjects, and 
" to be firm and constant in his labours: he ought to know like- 
" wise how to banish from their minds those miseries of opinion 
" which render them unhappy: for it is opinion which exercises 
" influence over Mankind, and renders them good or bad. Let 
u us see whether of the two, thou or I, can exert the greatest 
" power over their minds. It was not by fighting merely that 
" Hercules attracted followers in Gaul, but by divine songs, 
M which flowed from his mouth like chains of gold, charmed the 
" ears of those who listened, and constrained them to follow 
" him." 

Carnut with joy accepted this third challenge. He sung the 
combats of the Gods of the North on the icy mountains ; the 
tempests of Niorder upon the Seas ; the tricks of Vidar in the 
air ; the ravages of Thor on the Earth ; and the empire of Hea- 
der in the dark regions of Hell. To these he added the rehearsal 
of his own victories, and his tremendous strains transfused the 
emotions of fury into the heart of his warriors, who were on 
tiptoe to spread universal destruction. 

As to King Bardus, the following were his milder strains : 

" I sing the dawn of the morning ; the earliest rays of Aurora 

u which have arisen on the Gauls, the empire of Pluto ; the 

ssinga of Ceres, and the misfortune of the infant Lois. Lis- 

. to my son<;s, ye spirits of the rivers, and repeat them te 

•' the spirits of the azure mountains. 


" Ceres came from seeking her daughter Proserpine over tht 
" face of the whole Earth. She was on her return to Sicily, 
" where grateful myriads adored her. She traversed the sa- 
" vage Gauls, their trackless mountains, their desert valleys and 
" their gloomy forests, when she found her progress stopped by 
<; the waters of Seine, her own nymph transformed into a river. 

" On the opposite bank of the Seine, there happened at that 
" time to be a beautiful boy with flaxen hair, named Lois, 
" bathing himself in the stream. He took delight to swim in 
" the transparent waters, and to run about naked on the solitary 
" verdant dowr.s. The moment that he perceived a female, he 
" flew to hide himself amidst a tuft of reeds. 

" My lovely child! cried Ceres to him with a sigh; come to 
" me, my lovely child ! On hearing the voice of a woman in dis- 
" tress, Lois left his retreat among the reeds. He puts on, with 
" blushes, his robe of lamb's skin which was suspended on a 
u willow. He crosses the Seine on a bank of sand, and present- 
" ing his hand to Ceres, shews her a path through the midst of 
" the waters. 

" Ceres having passed the river, gives the boy Lois a cake, 
" a sheaf of corn, and a kiss ; she then informs him how bread 
" was made from the corn, and how corn grows in the fields. 
" Thanks, bcautious stranger, returned Lois ; I will carry to my 
" mother thy lessons, and thy welcome presents. 

" The mother of Lois divides with her child and husband the 
'* cake and the kiss. The enraptured father cultivates a field, 
'' and sows the grain. By and by the Earth is clothed with a 
u golden harvest, and a report is diffused over the Gauls, that 
" a Goddess had presented a celestial plant to their fortunate in- 
" habitants. 

" Near to that place lived a Druid. He was entrusted with 
" the inspection of the forests. He measured out to the Gauls, 
M for food, beech-mast and acorns from the oak. When he 
<; beheld a field cultivated, and a rich harvest, What becomes of 
" my power, says he, if men learn to live on corn ? 

" He calls Lois. My pretty little friend, says he, Where 
" wert thou when thou beheldest the stranger who gave thee 
M the fine ears of corn. Lois, apprehending no evil, conducts 
" him to the banks of the Seine. I was says he under that sil- 


•• vcr-leaved willow; I was running about over those snowv 
" daisies : I flew to hide myself under these reeds, because I 
" was naked. The treacherous Druid smiled : he seizes L, 
" and plunges him into the depths of the stream. 

" The mother of Lois saw her beloved child no more. She 
" wanders through the woods, calling aloud: Lois! where art 
" thou ? my darling child, Lois ! The echoes alone repeat, Lois, 
" my darling child, Lois ! She runs like one distracted along 
" the banks of the Seine. She perceives something white by the 
u edge of the water : He cannot be far off, said she ; there are 
" his beloved flowers, there are his snowy daisies. Alas ! it was 
" Lois, her darling child Lois ! 

" She weeps, she groans, she sighs ; she takes up in her trem- 
" bling arms the clay-cold body of Lois ; she fondly tries to re- 
" animate him in her bosom ; but the heart of the mother has 
" no longer the power of communicating warmth to the body of 
" the son ; and the clay-cold body of the son is already freez- 
* ing the heart of a mother : she is on the point of expiring. 
" The Druid, mounted on an adjoining rock, exults in his ven- 
" geance. 

" The Gods-do not always appear at the cry of the misera- 
" ble ; but the voice of a forlorn mother attracted the attention 
" of Ceres. The Goddess appeared. Lois, says she, Be thou 
" the most beautiful flower of the Gauls. Immediately the pale 
" cheeks of Lois expanded into a calix more white than the 
" snow : his flaxen hairs were transformed into filaments of 
" gold, and the sweetest of perfumes exhales from them. The 
" limber stem rises toward Heaven, but the head still droops on 
" the banks of the river which he loved. Lois is changed into 
" a lily. 

" The priest of Pluto beholds this prodigy unmoved. He 
" raises to the superior Gods an inflamed countenance, and eyes 
" sparkling with rage. He blasphemes, he threatens Ceres 
" was going to assault her with an impious hand ; when she 
" eras to him aloud: Gloomy and cruel tyrant, Remain where 
" thou art. 

" At the voice of the Goddess he becomes immoveable. 
" the rock lei is the powerful command, it opens into a cleft ; th - 
sof the Druid sink into it; his visage, bearded : 


" and empurpled with rage, rises toward Heaven in divergent 
" crimson radiations, and the garment which covered his mur- 
" derous arms is bristled into prickles. The Druid is trans- 
" formed into a thistle. 

" Thou, said the Goddess of the Harvests, who would per- 
" severe in feeding men like beasts, become thyself food for 
" animals. Continue to be the enemy of the harvests alter thy 
** death, as thou wert during thy life. As for thee, beautiful 
" flower of Lois, be thou the ornament of the Seine, and may 
" thy victorious flower, in the hand of her Kings, one day pre- 
" vail triumphantly over the mistletoe of the Druids. 

" Gallant followers of Carnut, come and dwell in my city. Thr. 
" flower of Lois perfumes my gardens ; the virgins, night and 
" day, chant his adventure in my plains. Every one there en 
" gages in easy and cheerful labour : and my granaries, beloved 
" by Ceres, overflow with piles of grain." 

Scarcely had Bardus finished his song, when the warriors of 
the North, who were perishing with hunger, abandoned the son 
of Tended, and fixed their residence in Lutetia. This good 
King frequently said to me : " Ah ! why have I not here some 
a illustrious bard of Greece, or of Egypt, to polish the minds of 
kt my subjects ? Nothing tends so much to humanize the heart 
k< as the melody of sweet songs. With the capacity of compos- 
" ing fine verses, and ingenious fictions, there is no need of a 
" sceptre to maintain authority." 

He carried Cephas and me to visit the spot where he had 
planted the trees and the grains recovered from our shipwreck. 
It was on the declivity of a hill exposed to the South. I was 
transported with delight, when I saw the trees which we had 
imported, replenished with juices and vigor. I first distinguish- 
ed the quince-tree of Crete, from it's cottony and fragrant fruit ; 
the walnut-tree of Jupiter, of a glossy green ; the filbert ; the 
fig-tree ; the poplar ; the pear-tree of Mount Ida, with it's py- 
ramidical fruit. All these trees were from the island of Crete. 
There were besides the vines of Thasos, and young chesnut- 
t.rees of the island of Sardinia. I saw a vast country within the 
compass of a small garden. Among those plants appeared some 
\\ hich were my compatriots, such as the hemp and the flax. 
Tlu-e were the vegetables which pleased the King most, be- 


cause of their utility. He had admired the stuffs into which 
they are manufactured in Egypt, more durable and more pliant 
than the skins in which most of the Gauls are habited. The 
King took delight in watering those plants with his own hand, 
and in clearing them of weeds. Already the hemp of a beauti- 
ful green, carried all it's heads equal to the stature of a Man, 
and the flax in blossom clothed the ground with a shade of azure. 

While Cephas and I were inwardly exulting in the reflection 
of having done good, information was received that the Britons 
elated with their recent success, not content to dispute with the 
Gauls the empire of the Sea which separates them, were prepar- 
ing to attack them by land, and to sail up the Seine, with an in- 
tention to carry steel and flame into the very bosom of the 
Country. They had taken their departure in boats innumera- 
ble, from a promontory of their island, separated from the Con- 
tinent by only a narrow strait. They coasted along the shore 
of the Gauls, and were ready to enter the Seine, the dangers of 
which they knew how to avoid, by running into the creeks 
which are sheltered from the rage of Neptune. The intended 
invasion of the Britons was noised abroad over all the Gauls, 
from the moment that they began to put it into execution ; for 
the Gauls kindle fires on the mountains, and by the number of 
these fires, and the thickness of their smoke, convey intelligence- 
much more promptly than by the flight of a bird. 

On receiving news that the Britons had embarked, the con - 
federated troops of the Gauls began to march to defend the 
mouth of the Seine. They were ranged under the standard of 
their several Chieftains: these consisted of the skins of the 
wolf, the bear, the vulture, the eagle, or of some other mischie- 
vous animal, suspended at the extremity of a long pole. Th;; ! . 
of King Bardus, and of his islsnd, presented the figure of a ship, 
the symbol of commerce. Cephas and I accompanied the King 
on this expedition. In a few days all the united force of the 
Gauls was collected on the shore of the Sea. 

Three opinions were started respecting the mode of defence. 
The first was to drive piles along the coast, to prevent the 
debarkation of the Britons ; a plan of easy execution, consider- 
ing that our numbers were inconceivable, and the forests at 
hand. The second was to civ them battle the moment that 


they landed : the third, not to expose the troops to the open 
attack of the advancing enemy, but to assault them when landed, 
and after they were entangled in the woods and valleys. No 
one of these* opinions was followed up ; for discord prevailed 
among the Chieftains of Gaul. Every one was tor command- 
ing, while no one was disposed to obey. While they were 
wasting time in deliberation the enemy appeared, and disem- 
barked while we were settling the arrangement of our plan. 

But for Cephas we had been undone. Before the arrival of 
die Britons, he had advised King Bardus to divide his force into 
two, composed of the inhabitants of Lutetia, to place himself 
in ambush with the better part in the woods which covered the 
opposite side of the mountain of Heva ; while Cephas himself 
should engage the enemy with the other party, joined to the 
rest of the Gauls. I entreated Cephas to detach from his divi- 
sion the young soldiers, who panted like myself to come to close 
action, and to entrust me with the command. I have no fear of 
danger, said I. Through all the proofs which the Priests of 
Thebes prescribe to the initiated I have passed, and know not 
what fear is. Cephas hesitated a few moments. At last he 
committed the young men of his division to my charge, recom- 
mending to them, as well as to me, not to separate too far from 
the main body. 

The enemy meanwhile had made good their landing. At 
.sight of this, many of the Gauls advanced to attack them, rend- 
ing the air with loud cries ; but as they charged in small parties, 
they were easily repulsed; and it would have been impossible 
to rally a single man of them, had not our rear afforded them 
an opportunity of recovering from their confusion* We pre- 
sently perceived the Britons in full march to attack us. The 
mouthful band which I commanded was instantly in motion, and 
advanced toward the Britons, unconcerned whether we were 
supported by the rest of the Gallic force or not. When we got 
within bow-shot, we saw that the enemy formed only one single 
column, long, broad, and closely embattled, advancing slowly 
upon us, while their barks were forcing their way up the river 
to get upon our rear. I was staggered, I confess, at sight of 
that multitude of half-naked barbarians, painted with red and 
blue, marching along in profound silence, and with the most 


perfect order. But when all at once there issued from their 
noiseless phalanx, clouds of darts, of arrows, of pebbles and 
leaden balls, which brought clown many of us, piercing some 
through and through, my surviving companions betook them- 
selves to flight. I myself was going to forget that it was my duty 
to set them an example of resolution, when I beheld Cephas by 
my side ; he was followed by the whole army. " Let us invoke 
" Hercules" cried he, " and advance to the charge." The pre- 
sence of my friend reanimated all my courage. I resumed my 
station, and we made the attack with our pikes levelled. The 
first enemy whom I encountered, was a native of the Hebrides, 
a man of Gigantic stature. The aspect of his arms inspired hor- 
ror : his head and shoulders were clad in the skin of a prickly 
thorn-back ; he wore around his neck a collar of human jaw- 
bones, and he bore for a lance the trunk of a young fir armed 
■\aith the tooth of a whale. " What demandest thou of Hercu- 
" les V said he to me, " here he is to attend thee." At the 
same time he aimed at me a stroke of his enormous lance, with 
so much fury, that if it had hid the mark I must have been nail- 
ed by it to the ground, which it penetrated to a great depth. 
While he was struggling to disengage it, I pierced him through 
the throat with the spear which was in my hand : there imme- 
diately issued from the wound a stream of black and thick blood ; 
and down fell the stately Briton, biting the ground, and blasphe- 
ming the Gods. 

Meanwhile our troops, collected into one firm body, were 
closely engaged with the column of the enemy. Clubs clashed 
with clubs, buckler pressed on buckler, lance crossed lance. 
Thus two fkj^c bulls dispute the empire of the meadows : their 
horns entwnw: their foreheads rattle against each other : bellow- 
ing they press in opposite directions ; and whether they gain or 
lose ground, neither separates from his rival. Thus we main- 
tained the combat, body to body. Nevertheless that column 
which exceeded us in number, was bearing us down with supe- 
rior force, when King Rardus came up, and assaulted their rear 
with his troops, who came into action with a shout which rended 
the air. Upon this a panic terror seized thos' barbarians. 
had been flushed with a hope of surrounding us, but wen them- 
selves surrounded. They deserted their ranks in confusion, and 
i. III. Ee 


fled toward the shore of the Sea in the hope of regaining their 
barks, which had now considerably advanced up the stream. 
A dreadful carnage ensued, and many prisoners were taken. 

The combat being finished, I said to Cephas : The Gauls aw 
indebted for their victory to the counsel which you gave the 
King ; for my part, to you I owe the preservation of my ho- 
nour. I had solicited a post which I knew not how to fill ; I 
ought to have exhibited an example of valour, to those who 
were under my command ; but was incapable of doing it, when 
your presence re-kindled a sense of duty. I imagined that the 
initiations of Egypt had fortified me against all apprehension of 
danger; but it is eas) r to be brave amidst conflicts out of which 
you are sure of escaping. Cephas thus replied : " O Amasis ! 
" 'here is more fortitude in confessing a fault, than there is 
..kness in committing it. It is Hercules who has given 
" us the victory ; but, after him, it was surprise which robbed 
" our enemies of courage, and which had shaken your's. Mili- 
" tary valour like every other virtue is to be acquired only by 
M exercise. . We ought on all occasions to be diffident of our- 
" selves. In vain do we trust to our own experience ; in the 
" aid of Heaven alone our confidence should be placed. While 
" we are buckling on our armour to defend us befoi-e, fortune 
" strikes at us front behind. Confidence in the Gods alone is a 
" defence on every side." 

To Heracles we consecrated part of the spoils taken from the 
Britons. The Druids advised to burn the prisoners, because 
the Britons were in use to treat those whom they took in battle 
from the Gauls in this manner. But I presented myself in the * 
assembly of the Gauls, and thus addressed thenu*" O ye Na- 
" tions ! you see from my example, whether th^R>ds delight 
w in human sacrifices. They ha . ted the victory in your 

" generous hands : Will you stain them with the blood of the 
*' miserable ? Has there not enough of blood been shed in the 
a rage of battle? Can you now spill it, without passion, and 
" in the joy of triumph? Your enemies immolate their prison- 
" ers. Surpass them in generosity as you surpass them in 
il courage." The Iarles, and all the warriors, received this ad- 
" vice with loud applause : and it was decreed that the prison- 
of war should be disarmed, and reduced to slavery. 


1 was the cr.use therefore of the abolition of the Law which 
condemned them to the flames. I likewise proved the occa- 
sion of abrogating the custom of sacrificing innocents to Mars, 
and of reducing the shipwrecked to servitude. Thus I Mas 
thrice useful to Mankind in the Gauls ; once by my success, 
and twice by my misfortunes : so true it is that the Gods can 
when they please bring good out of evil. 

We returned to Lutetia loaded with the acclamations and 
applause of the People. The first anxiety expressed by the 
King, on his arrival, was to carry us with him to visit his gar- 
den. The greatest part of our trees were in great forwardness. 
He admired first how Nature had preserved their fruits from 
the attack of the birds. The chestnut, still in a milky state, was 
covered with leather, and with a prickly shell. The tender 
' walnut was protected by a hard shell and a bitter outward case. 
The soft fruits were defended, previous to their maturity, by 
their roughness, their acidity, or their verdure. Those which 
were ripe invited the hand to gather them. The gold-coloured 
apricot, the velvet peach and the cottony quince, exhaled the 
sweetest of perfumes. The boughs of the plum-tree were 
covered with violet fruits, besprinkled with a white powder. 
The grapes, already of a vermilion hue, hung in clusters from 
the vine ; and over the broad leaves of the fig-tree, the half- 
opened fig distilled it's juice in drops of honey and crystal. " It 
" is easy to see," said the King, " that these fruits are presents 
" sent from Heaven. They are not, like the seeds of our for- 
" est-trees, at a height which we cannot reach.* They pre- 
" sent themselves to the hand. Their smiling colours allure 
" the eye, their sweet perfumes the organs of smelling, and 
" they seem formed for the mouth from their size and round- 
" ness." But when that good King had caught the fla- 
vour of them by his palate: " O real gift of Jupiter .''Ex- 
claimed he, " no aliment prepared by human skill is once to be 
" compared to them ! Thev excel in sweetness the hone} 
" the cream. O, my dear friends, my much respected guests, 
" you have bestowed on me a present of much hig] 


" than my kingdom ! You have introduced into savage Gaul a 
" portion of delicious Egypt. I prefer a single one of these 
" trees to all the mines of tin which render the Britons so rich 
" and so haughty." 

He sent for the principal inhabitants of the city, and made 
each of them taste those wondrous fruits. He recommended 
to them carefully to preserve the seeds, and to put them in the 
ground at the proper season. From the joy expressed by this 
excellent Prince, and by his People, I was made sensible that 
Man's highest delight consists in doing good to his fellow-crea- 

Cephas said to me : " Now is the time to shew to my com- 
" patriots the use of the Arts of Egypt. I have saved from 
" the shipwrecked vessel the greatest part of our machines ; 
" but hitherto they have remained unemployed ; nay, I durst 
" not so much as look at them ; for they reminded me too af- 
" fectingly of the loss of you. The moment is come for turn- 
" ing them to account. Those fields of corn are now ripe ; that 
" hemp and those flaxes are hastening to be so." 

Having gathered those plants, we taught the King and his 
People the use of mills, for reducing corn to flower, and the 
different processes of preparing dough, in order to make bread 
of it.* Previous to our arrival, the Gauls peeled wheat, oats 
and barley, by pounding them with wooden mallets in the trunk 
of a tree hollowed out, and satisfied themselves with boiling the 
grain in this state for food. We afterwards shewed them the 
method of steeping hemp in water, to separate the filaments 
from the straw, of drying it, of beating it, of dressing it, of 
spinning it, and of twisting several threads together for the 
purpose of making cordags. We made them observe how 
those cords, by their strength and pliancy, are adapted to act as 
the nerves of every species of machinery. We taught them the 
art of distending the threads of flax on looms, to weave into 
cloth by means of the shuttle ; and how these gentle and useful 

* The Gauls lived, as did all other savag-e tribes, on pap, or frumenty 
The Romans themselves were for three hundred years ignorant of th< 
of bread ; according to Pliny boiled grain or frumenty constituted the 
est part of their aliment. 


labours might employ the young people, innocently and agree- 
ably, during the long nights of Winter. 

We instructed them in the use of the auger, of the gimlet, 
of the plane, and of the saw, invented by the ingenious DeUalus: 
as these tools furnish Man with additional hands, and fashion 
to his use a multitude of trees, the timber of which would have 
gone to waste in the forests. We taught them to extract from 
their knotty trunk powerful screws, and ponderous presses, fit 
for squeezing out the juice of an infinite number of fruits, and 
for forcing oils out of the hardest nuts. They did not gather 
many grapes from our vines ; but we inspired them with an 
ardent desire of multiplying the slips, not only by the excel- 
lence of the fruit from the bough, but by letting them taste the 
wines of Crete, and of the Isle of Thasos, which we had pre- 
served in urns. 

After having disclosed to them the use of an infinity of be- 
nefits which Nature has placed on the face of the Earth, obvi- 
ous to the eye of Man, we aided them in discovering those 
which she has deposited under their feet ; how water may be 
found in places the most remote from rivers, by means of wclis 
invented by Danawi ; in what manner metals are discovered, 
though buried in the bowels of the Earth ; how, after having 
them melted into bars, they could be hammered upon the anvil, 
to prepare them for being divided into tablets and plates ; in 
what manner, by a process the most simple, clay may be fa- 
shioned on the potter's wheel, into figures and vases of everv 
form. We surprised them much more, by shewing them bot- 
tles of glass made with sand and flint. They were delighted to 
ecstacy, to see the liquor which they contained manifest tot he 
eve but secured from the touch. 

But when we read to them the books of Mcrcurius Trismc- 
g'utusy which treat of the liberal Arts, and of the natural Scien- 
ces, then it was that their admiration exceeded all bounds. At 
first they were incapable of comprehending how speech could 
issue from a dumb book, and how the thoughts of the earliest 
Egyptians could possibly have been transmitted to them, on the 
frail leaves of the papyrus. When they afterwards heard the 
recital of our discoveries ; when they saw the prodigies effected 
by the mechanical powers, which move the heaviest bodi: 


means of small levers, and those of Geometry, which can mea- 
sure distances the most inaccessible, they became perfectly trans- 
ported. The wonders of chemistry and of magic, and the va- 
rious phenomena of physics hurried them from rapture to rap- 
ture. But when we predicted to them an eclipse of the Moon, 
which prior to our arrival, they considered as an accidental fai- 
lure of that planet, and when they saw at the very moment 
which we had indicated, the orb of night become dark in the 
midst of a serene sky, they fell at our feet saying: " Assuredly, 
%i ye are Gods !" 

Omji, that young Druid who had discovered so much sensi- 
bility to my afflictions, attended all our lessons of instruction. 
u From your intelligence," said he to us, " and from your be- 
" neficence, I am tempted to believe you some of the supe- 
" rior Gods, but from the ills which you have endured I per- 
" ceive that you are only men like ourselves. You must un- 
" doubtedly have contrived the means of climbing up into Hea- 
" ven ; or the inhabitants of the celestial regions must have de- 
" scended into highly favoured Egypt, to communicate to you 
" so many benefits, and so much illumination. Your Arts and 
" Sciences surpass our understanding, and can be the effects 
" only of a power divine. You are the darling children of the 
" superior Gods : as for us we are abandoned of Jupiter to the 
" infernal deities. Our country is covered with unproductive 
" forests, inhabited by maleficent genii, who disseminate through 
" the whole of our existence discord, civil broils, terrors, igno- 
" ranee and mischievous opinions. Our lot is a thousand times 
" more deplorable than that of the beasts, which, clothed, lodg- 
" ed and fed by the hand of Nature, follow undeviatingly their 
" instinct, without being tormented by the fears of Hell." 

" The Gods," replied Cephas, " have not been unjust to any 
" Country, nor to any one individual. Every Country possesses 
" blessings peculiar to itself, and which serve to keep up acom- 
" munication among all Nations, by a reciprocal interchange of 
u commodities. Gaul contains the metals which Egypt wants; 
" her forests are more beautiful ; her cattle yield milk in greater 
M abundance ; and the fleeces of her sheep are greater in quan- 
" tity, and give a finer wool. But wheresoever the habitation 
" of Man is fixed, his portion is always far superior to that of 


" the beasts, because he is endowed with a reason which ex- 
" pands in proportion to the obstacles which it surmounts, and 
** because he alone of animals is capable of applying to his own 
-' use means which nothing can resist, such as fire. Thus Jupi- 
A ter has bestowed upon him empire over the Earth, by illumi- 
'* nating his reason with the intelligence of Nature herself, and 
•' by confiding in him alone that element which is her prime 
" moving principle." 

Cephas afterwards talked to Omji, and to the Gauls, of the 
rewards prepared in the World to come, for virtue and benefi- 
cence, and the punishments laid up in store for vice and tyran- 
ny ; of the metempsychosis, and the other mysteries of the re- 
ligion of Egypt, as far as a stranger is permitted to be instruct- 
ed in them. The Gauls, consoled by his discourse, and enrich- 
ed by our presents, called us their benefactors, their fathers, the 
true interpreters of the Gods. King Bardus thus addressed us : 
" I will adore Jupiter alone. As Jupiter loves Mankind, he 
" must afford particular protection to Kings, to whom the feli- 
" city of whole Nations is entrusted. I will likewise pay ho- 
" mage to Is is, who has brought down his benefits to the Earth, 
" that she may present the vows of my People to the Sovereign 
" of the Gods." At the same time he gave orders to rear a 
temple to Isis,* at some distance from the city, in the midst of 
the forest ; to erect her statue in it, with the infant Orus in her 
arms, such as we had brought it with us in our vessel ; to honour 
her with all the sacred ceremonies of Egypt; and that her pries- 
tesses, clothed in linen, should night and day adore her with 
songs, and by a life of purity which exalts Man to the Gods. 

He afterwards expressed a wish to be instructed in reading 
and tracing the Ionic characters. He was so struck with the 
utility of letters, that, transported with delight, he sung the fol- t 
lowing strains: 

" Behold the magic characters which have power to recall the 
tt dead from the dark recesses of the tomb. They inform us 
" what our fathers thought a thousand years ago ; and a thou- 
" sand years hence, they will be instructing our children what 

is pretended that this is the ancient Church of Saint-Genevieve, • 
prior to the introduction of Christianity amon^ the GauK 


" we think at this day. There" is no arrow that flies so far, 
" neither is there any lance so strong. They can reach a man 
" though entrenched on the summit of a mountain ; they pene- 
" trate into the head though fortified with the helmet, and force 
** their way to the heart in defiance of the cuirass. Thev ca ai 
" seditions, they administer sage counsels, they conciliate affec- 
" tion, they comfort, they strengthen ; but in the hands of a 
" wicked man they produce quite an opposite effect." 

" My son," said this good King to me one day, " Are the 
" moons of thy country more beautiful than ours ? Hast thou 
" remaining in Egypt any object of regret? Thou hast brought 
" to us from thence all the best of human blessings : plants, arts 
" and sciences. All Egypt ought to be here for thy sake. Con- 
" tinue to live with us. After my death thou shalt reign over 
u the Gauls. I have no child, except an only daughter named 
" Gotha : to thee I will give her in marriage. A whole Peo- 
** pie, believe me, is of more value than one family, and a good 
" wife than the land of one's nativity. Gotha's residence is in 
" that island below, the trees of which are visible from this spot ; 
" for it is proper that a young woman should be brought up re- 
" mote from men, and especially at a distance from the Courts 
" of Kings." 

The desire of making a Nation happy suspended in me the 
love of Country. I consulted Cephas on the subject, who adopt- 
ed the views of the King. I besought that Prince therefore to 
permit me to be conducted to the place of his daughter's habi- 
tation, that, in conformity to the custom of the Egyptians, I 
might endeavour to render myself agreeable to the person who 
was one day to be the partner of my pains and of my pleasures. 
The King gave orders to an aged female, who came every day 
to the palace for provisions to Gotha, to conduct me to her pre- 
sence. The ancient lady made me embark with her in a barge 
loaded with necessaries ; and committing ourselves to the course 
of the stream, we landed in a very little while on the island 
where the daughter of King Bardus resided. This island was 
called the Isle of Swans, because the birds of that name resorted 
thither in the Spring, to make their nests among the reeds that 
"ind it's shores, and which at all seasons fed on the anserina 


potent ilia* produced there in great abundance. On our land- 
ing, we perceived the Princess seated under a clump of aider- 
trees, in the midst of a down yellowed all over with the flowers 
of the anserina. She was encompassed with Swans, which she 
called to her by scattering among them the grains of oats. 
r I 'hough she was under the shade of the tree, she surpassed 
those birds in whiteness, from the purity of her complexion, 
and the fairness of her ermine robe. Her hair was of the most 
beautiful black ; and she wore it encircled, as well as her robe, 
with a red-coloured riband. Two women, who attended her 
at some distance, advanced to meet us. The one tied our barge 
to the branches of a willow; and the other, taking me by the 
hand, presented me to her mistress. The young Princess made 
me sit down by her on the grass ; after which she invited me to 
partake with her of some flower of millet boiled, of a duck 
roasted on the bark of the birch-tree, with goat milk in the horn 
of an elk. She then waited, in modest silence, till I should ex- 
plain to her the intention of my visit. 

Having tasted, in compliance with the custom, the dishes 
presented to me, I addressed her thus : ** O beautiful Gotha, I 
" aspire to the honour of being son-in-law to the King your la- 
u ther, and I visit you with his consent, to know whether my 
" suit will be agreeable to you V 

The daughter of King Bardus, with downcast looks, replied: 
" O stranger ! I have been demanded in marriage by many 
" Iarles, who are from day to day making my father magnifi- 
" cent presents, in the hope of obtaining my hand ; but no one 
a of them possesses my affection. Fighting is the only art which 
u they understand. As for thee, I believe, if thou becomest 

• The anserina potentilla is found in great abundance on the banks of the 

inity of Paris. It sometimes renders tbein completely yellow, 

I close of Summer, by the colour of it's Mowers. This flower is 

formed, about the size of a shilling 1 , without rising upon a stem. It 

round, as does likewise it's foliage, which spreads very far in 

form of net-wori Gei s< are ver\ fond of this plant. h's leaves, in form of 

ise-foot, adhering closel) to the ground, admit of the water-fowl's walk- 

. v them as upon a carpet, and the yellow colour of it's flowers forms a 

is1 with the azure of the river, and '.he verdure of the 

with the marbled colour of the geese, which are per- 

ihis ground at a great dista 

Vol. III. F f 


a my husband, thou wilt make my happiness thy study, since 
u thou already hast devoted thyself to the happiness of my Peo- 
" pie. Thou wilt instruct me in the arts of Egypt, and I shall 
M become like unto the good Isis of thy Country, whose name 
" is mentioned with such profound respect all over Gaul." 

After she had thus spoken, she attentively considered the dif- 
ferent parts of my habit, admired the fineness of their texture, 
and made her women examine them, who lifted up their eyes 
to Heaven in astonishment. After a short pause, looking at me, 
she thus proceeded : " Though thou comest from a Country 
" replenished with every species of wealth, and every produc- 
" tion of ingenuity, do not imagine that I am in want of any 
" thing, and that I myself am destitute of intelligence. My fa- 
. " ther has trained me up in the love of labour, and he causes 
" me to live in the greatest abundance of all things." 

At the same time she introduced me into her palace, where 
twenty of her women were employed in plucking river-fowls, to 
make for her ornaments and robes of their plumage. She 
shewed me baskets and mats of very delicate rushes, woven by 
her own hand ; vessels of fine pewter in great quantities ; a hun- 
dred skins of wolves, martens and foxes, with twenty bear- 
skins. "All this treasure," said she to me, " shall be thine, if 
" thou espousest me ; but upon these conditions, that thou tnkt st 
" no other wife but me ; and thou shalt not oblige me to labour 
" the ground, or to go in quest oi the skins of the deer and of 
" the buffaloes which thou mayest kill in hunting in the forests; 
" for such tasks are imposed by husbands on their wives in 
" these countries, but which I do not at all like ; and thc.t, if at 
" length thou becomest tired of living with me, thou shalt re- 
** place me in this isle", whither thou hast come to woo me, and 
" where my pleasui ts in feeding the Swans, and in chant- 

11 ing the praises of Seine, the nymph of Ceres.'''' 

I smiled within myself at the simplicity of the daughter of 
King Bardus, and at the sight of what she denominated trea- 
sure ; but as the true riches of a wife consist in tl»e love of in- 
dustry, cundour, frankness, gentleness, and that there is no 
ry once to be compared to these virtues, I replied to her : " O 
" beautiful Gotha, marriage among the Egyptians is a I 
" union, a mutual interchange of possessions and of sorrows ; 


" thou shalt be dear to me as the better half of myself." I 
then made her a present of a skein of flax, which grew and was 
prepared in the gardens of the King her father. She received 
it with delight, and said to me : " My friend, I will spin this 
" flax, and have it weaved into a robe for the day of my espou- 
" sals." She presented me, in her turn with this little dog 
which you see, so covered over with hair that his eyes are 
scarcely discernible. She said to me : " The name of this dog 
" is Callus ; he is descended from a race remarkable for their 
" fidelity. He will follow thee wheresoever thou goest, over 
11 the land, over the snow, and into the water. He will ac- 
" company thee in the chace, nay to the field of battle. He 
" will be to thee, at all seasons, a faithful companion, and a svm- 
" bol of my affection." As the day was drawing to a close she 
reminded me that it was time to retire, desiring me in future 
not to come down along the current of the river, but to travel 
by land on the banks till I came opposite to her island, where 
her women should be in waiting to ferry me over, and thus 
conceal our mutual felicity from jealous eyes. I took my leave 
of her, and returned to my home, forming in my own mind as 
I went on my way a thousand agreeable projects. 

One day as I was going to visit her, through a path cut out 
in the forest, in compliance with the advice which she had given 
me, I met one of the principal larles attended by a great num- 
ber of his vassals. They were armed as if they had been in a 
state of war. For my part I wore no armour, like a man who 
was at peace with all the World, and whose mind was occu- 
pied only with the reveries of love. The Iarle advanced to- 
ward me with a haughty air, and thus accosted me : " What 
" seekest thou in this country of warriors, with these woman- 
" ish arts of thine ? Meanest thou to teach us how to spin flax, 
kt and expectest thou to obtain the beauteous Gotha as th 
" compense ? My name is Torstan. I was one of the compa- 
" nions of Gamut. I have been engaged in twenty-two battles 
" by Sea, and have come off victorious in thirty single combats, 
.rice have I fought with Vtttiking that renowned Prince of 
" the North. I am going to carry thy hairy scalp and lay it at 
" the feet of the god Mars, from whom thou mnclest thy 
cape, and to quaff from thy skull the milk of thy flocks." 


After an address so brutal, I apprehended that the barbarian 
was about to assassinate me ; but uniting magnanimity to fe- 
rociousness, he took off his head-piece and cuirass, which were 
of bull's hide, and presenting to me two naked swords desired 
me to make my choice. 

It was useless to think of reasoning with a man under the in- 
fluence of jealousy and madness. I secretly invoked the aid of 
Jupiter, the protector of strangers; and having chosen the 
shorter but the lighter of the two swords, though I had scarce- 
ly strength to wield it, a dreadful combat ensued, while his vas- 
sals surrounded us as witnesses, expecting to see the earth red- 
dened either with the blood of their chieftain, or with that of 
their guest. 

My intention at first was to disarm the enemy, in the view of 
saving his life, but he did not leave this in my option. Rage 
transported him beyond all the bounds of prudence. The first 
blow which he aimed at me carried off a huge splinter from a 
neighbouring oak. I shunned the blow by stooping down my 
head. This movement redoubled his insolence. " Wert thou," 
exclaimed he, " to stoop down to hell thou shouldest not escape 
" me." Then taking his sword in both hands, he fell furiously 
upon me ; but Jupiter preserving my senses in complete tran- 
quillity, I parried with the back of my sword the stroke with 
which he w T as going to fell me to the ground, and presenting to 
him the point he violently rushed upon it, and run himself 
through the breast. Two streams of blood issued at once from 
the wound and from his mouth ; he fell backward, the sword 
dropped from his hands, he raised his eyes to Heaven and ex- 
pired. His vassals immediately encompassed his body, utter- 
ing loud and horria cries. But they suffered me to depart 
without the least molestation ; for generosity is a prominent 
character in those barbarians. I retired to the city sadly de- 
ploring my victory. 

I gave an account of what had happened to Cephas and to 
the King. " Those Iarles," said the King, " give me much unea- 
Ci siness. They tyrannize over my People. Every profligate 
" in the Country on whom they can lay their hands, they take 
a care to wheedle over to strenjthen their party. They some- 
" times render themselves formidable even to myself. But the 


" Druids are still much more so. No one dares to do any 
*' thing here without their consent. Which way shall I ^o to 
" work to enfeeble those two powers? I amagined that by in- 
" creasing the influence of the Iarles, I should raise a bulwark 
" to oppose to that of the Druids. But the contrary has taken 
" place. The power of the Druids is increased. It appears 
" as if there were an understanding between them for the pur- 
" pose of extending their oppression over the People, nay even 
" over my guests. O stranger," said he to me, " you have had 
" but too much experience of this !" Then, turning to Cephas, 
" O my friend," added he, " you who in the course of your 
u travels have acquired the knowledge necessary to the govcrn- 
M ment of Mankind, give some instruction, on this subject, to a 
" King who never was beyond the limits of his own Country. 
u Oh ! how sensible I am of the benefit which Kings might de- 
" rive from travelling." 

" I will unfold you, O King," replied Cephas, " some part 
" of the Policy and Philosophy of Egypt. One of the funda- 
" mental Laws of Nature is, that every thing must be governed 
" by contraries. From contraries the harmony of the Universe 
" results. The same thing holds good with respect to that of 
" Nations. The power of arms and that of Religion are at va- 
" riance in every Country. These two powers are necessary to 
" the preservation of the State. When the People are oppres- 
" sed by their Chieftains they flee for refuge to 'the Priests ; 
" and when oppressed by their Priests they seek refuge in the 
" Cheftains. The power of the Druids has increased therefore 
" with you, by that very increase of the power of the Iarles ; 
" for thr:se two powers universally counterbalance each other. 
" If you wish then to diminish one of the two, so far from aug- 
" menting it's counterpoise, as you have done, you ought on 
" the contrary to reduce it. 

" But there is a method still more simple, and more infalli- 
" ble, of diminishing at once both the powers which are so of- 
" tensive to you. It is to render your People happy ; for they 
" will no longer ramble in quest of protection out of yourself, 
" and these two powers will be speedily annihilated, as they are 
u indebted for the whole of their influence only to the opinion 

of thai very people. In this you will succeed, by furnish 


" the Gauls with ample means of subsistence, by the cstablish- 
" ment of the arts which sweeten human life, and especially by 
" honouring and encouraging agriculture, which is it's main 
" support. While the People thus live in the enjoyment of abun- 
" dance, the Iarles and the Druids will find themselves in the 
" same state. Whenever these two corps shall have learned to be 
" content with their condition, they will no longer think of dis- 
" turbing the repose of others ; they will no longer have at their 
" disposal that crowd of miserable wretches, half-starving with 
" cold and hunger, who for a morsel of bread are ever ready to 
" abet the violence of the one, or the superstition of the other. 
" The result of this humane policy will be, that your own pow- 
" er, supported by that of a People whom your exertions are 
41 rendering happy, must completely absorb that of the Iarles 
44 and of the Druids. In every well regulated Monarchy, the 
" power of the King is in the People, and that of the People in 
" the King. You will then reduce your nobility and the priest- 
" hood to their natural functions. The Iarles will defend the 
" Nation against foreign invasion, and will be no longer oppres- 
" sors at home : and the Druids will no longer govern the 
W Gauls by terror, but will comfort them, and by their supe- 
44 rior illumination and compassionate counsels, will assist them 
44 in bearing the ills of life, as the ministers of every Religion 
" ought to do. 

*' By such a policy it is that Egypt has attained a degree of 
" power, and of felicity, which renders her the centre of the 
" Nations, and that the wisdom of her priesthood commands so 
" much respect over the face of the whole Earth. Keep this 
" maxim therefore constantly in view : That every excess of 
" power in a religious or military corps, arises out of the wretch- 
" edness of the People, because all power is derived from them. 
" There is no other way of curbing that excess but by rendering 
44 the People happy. 

44 When once your authority shall be completely established, 
" communicate a share of it to Ma£istrates selected from among 
44 persons of the most distinguished goodness. Bend your chief 
" attention to the education of the children of the commonalty : 
" but take care not to entrust it to the first adventurer who may 
" be disposed to undertake it, and still less to any one particular 


** corps, such as that of the Druids, the interests of which are 
*' always different from those of the State. Consider the edu- 
" cation of the children of your People as the most valuable 
" part of your administration. It alone can form citizens. 
u Without it the best Laws are good for nothing. 

" While you wait for the means and an opportunity of laying 
" a solid foundation whereon to rear the fabric of Gallic felici- 
" ty, oppose some barriers to the ills which they endure. Insti- 
" tute a variety of festivals to dissipate their thoughts bv the 
" charm of music and dancing. Counterbalance the united iri- 
" fluence of the Iarles and Druids by that of the women. Assist 
" these in emerging out of their domestic slavery. Let them 
" assist at the festive meetings and assemblies, nay at the reli- 
" gious feasts. Their natural gentleness will gradually soften 
" the ferocity of both manners and religion. 

" Your observations," replied the King to Cephas, " are re- 
" plete with truth, and your maxims with wisdom. I mean to 
" profit by them. It is my determination to render this city 
" illustrious for it's industry. In the mean while, my People 
" ask for nothing better than to sing and make merry ; I my- 
" self will compose songs for their use, as for the women I am 
" fully persuaded that their aid will be of high importance to 
** me. riy their means I shall begin the work of rendering my 
" People happy ; at least by the influence of Manners, if I can- 
11 not by that of Laws." 

While this good King was speaking, we perceived on the op- 
posite bank of the Seine the body of Torstan. It was stripped 
naked, and appeared on the grass like a hillock of snow. His 
friends and vassals moved solemnly around it, and from time to 
time rent the air with fearful cries. One of his kindred crossed 
the river in a boat, and addressed the King in these words : 
iotl calls for blood ; the Egyptian must be put to death !" 
The King made no reply to this person ; but as soon as he had 
retired accosted me in these words : " Your defence of your- 
" self was perfectly warrantable and legal ; but were this my 
" personal quarrel I should be under the necessity of withdraw- 
" ing from the con s . If you remain here, you will be 

" obliged, by the Laws, to fight one alter another with all th? 
' k kindred of Torstan, who are very numerous, and sooner or 


" later fall you must. On the other hand, if I defend you 
" against them as I mean to do, this rising city must be inrolv- 
41 ed in your destruction ; for the relations, the friends and the 
«* vassals of Torstan, will assuredly come and lay siege to it ; 
" and they will be joined by multitudes of the Gauls whom the 
" Druids, irritated as they are against you, are already exciting 
" to vengeance. Nevertheless be confident of this, you will here 
" find men determined not to abandon you, be the danger ever 
" so threatening." 

He immediately issued his orders to provide for the security 
of the city ; and instantly the inhabitants were seen in motion 
along the ramparts, resolved to a man to stand a siege in my de- 
fence. Here they collected a huge pile of flint-stones j there 
they planted prodigious cross-bows, and long beams armed 
with prongs of iron. Meanwhile we perceived innumerable 
tribes of men marching along the banks of the Seine in martial 
arrav. They were the friends, the kinsmen, the vassals of Tor- 
stan with their slaves ; the partisans of the Druids ; such as 
were jealous of the King's establishment, and those who from 
of mind affect novtlties. Some floated down the river in 
boats ; others crossed the forest in lengthened columns. Tbcy 
took their station as one man on the banks adjoining to Lutetia, 
and their number surpassed the powers of reckoning. It was 
absolutely impossible I ever should escape them. In vain would 
it have been to make the attempt under favour of the darkness ; 
for as soon as night set in, the besiegers kindled innumerable 
fires, with which the river was illuminated to the very bottom 
of it's channel. 

Reduced to this perplexity, I formed in my own mind a re- 
solution which was well-pleasing to Jupiter. As I no longer 
expected any thing good at the hands of men, I resolved to 
throw myself into the arms of Virtue, and to save this infant city 
by a voluntary surrender of myself to the enemy. Scarcely had 
I reposed my confidence in the Gods, when they appeared for 
my deliverance. 

Ornfi presented himself before us, holding in his hand an oaken 
bough on which had grown a sprig of the mistletoe. At sight 
of this little shrub, which had almost proved so fatal to me, I 
shuddered with horror ; but I was not aware that we arc fre- 


quently indebted for safety to that which menaced us with de- 
struction, as we likewise frequently meet destruction in what 
promised us safety. "O King!" said Omf, "O Cephas! be 
" composed ; I bear in my hand the means of saving your 
" friend. Young stranger," said he to me, " were all the na- 
" tions of Gaul combined against thee, armed with this thou 
" mayest pass through the thickest of their hosts, while not one 
" of thy numerous foes durst so much as look thee in the face. 
" It is a sprig of the mistletoe, which grew on this oaken branch. 
" Permit me to inform you from whence proceeds the power oi 
" this plant, equally formidable to the Gods and to the men of 
" this country.* Balder one day informed his mother Friga, 
M that he had dreamed he was going to die. Friga conjured 
" the fire, the metals, the stones, diseases, the water, animals, 
" serpents, that they would not hurt her son ; and the incanta- 
" tions of Friga were so powerful that nothing could resist 
" them. Balder mingled therefore in the combats of the Gods, 
" undaunted amidst showers of arrows. Lake his enemy was 
" eagerly desirous of discovering the cause of it. He assumed 
" the form of an old woman, and threw himself in the way of 
« Friga. Flights of arrows and showers of massy rock, said he 
" to her, fall upon thy son Balder, but hurt him not. I know it 
" -well, said Friga; all these things have pledged unto vie their 
" oath. Nothing in Nature has the power of doing him harm. 
" This grace have I obtained of even/ being possessed of power. 
" Of one little shrub alone I asked it not, because it appear 
" me too feeble to excite apprehension. It adhered to the bark of 
u an oak ; and scarcely had the advantage of a roof. It lived 
" without earth. The name of it is Mistletein. Thus spake 
" Friga. Loke went instantly in quest of this little shrub ; and 
u mixing in the hosts of the Gods while they were engaged in 
" combat with the invulnerable Balder, for battles are their 

* Sec the Volospa of the Irish. This history of Bald ingularre- 

temblanccto that of Achillea plunged by his mo 
le heel, inorder to render him invulm 

lat pari ' ody which an ar- 


the powerful ought 

Vox.. HI. G g 


u sports, he approached the blind Nader. Wherefore, said he 
" to him, levellest thou not likewise weapons against Balder ! I 
" am blind, replied Hauler, neither am I provided with arms. 
" Loke presented to him the mistletoe of the oak, and said : 
" Balder is just before thee. The blind Header let fly the fatal 
" shaft : Balder falls transfixed and lifeless. Thus the invul- 
" nerable son of a Goddess was slain by a twig of mistletoe, 
" launched from the hand of one blind. This is the origin of 
' ( the respect paid in the Gauls to this shrub. 

" Compassionate, O stranger: a People governed by terror, 
" because the voice of reason is not heard among them. I flat- 
" tered" myself on thy arrival with the hope that thouwert des- 
" tined to found, and to extend her empire, by introducing the 
I ts of Egvpt ; and that I should behold the accomplishment 
" of an ancient oracle universally received among us, by which 
" a destiny the most sublime is assigned to this city ; that it's 
" temples shall rear their heads above the tops of the forests ; 
" that it sh. 11 assemble within it's precincts the men of all Na- 
" lions ; that the ignorant should resort hither for instruction, 
" the miserable for consolation ; and that there the Gods should 
4t communicate themselves to men, as in highly favoured Egypt. 
" But, ah, these happy times are still removed to an awful dis- 
• tance." 

The King thus addressed Cephas and myself: " O my friends, 
" avail yourselves without a moment's delay, of the succour 
" which Omfi brings you." At the same time he gave orders 
to prepare a bargL; for us, provided with excellent rowers. He 
presented us with two ashen half-pikes, mounted with steel by 
his own hand, and two ingots of gold the first fruits of l^is com- 
ma-; <-. He next employed some of his confidential servants to 
conduct us to the territory of the Veneti. " They are," said 
lie to us, " the best navigators of all the Gauls. They will fur- 
" nish you with the means of returning into your own Country, 
" for their vessels traffic up the Mediterranean. They are be- 
' c sides a People of singular goodness. As for you, O my 
" Friends ! your names shall be ever held in honour all over the 
" Gauls. Cephas and Amasis shall be the burthen of my songs ; 
" and so long as I live their names shall frequently resound 
" along these shores." 


We accordingly took leave of" this good King, and of Omf my 
deliverer. They accompanied us to the brink of the Seine, dis- 
solved into tears, as we ourselves likewise were. As we passed 
through the city, crowds of people followed us exhibiting the 
tenderest marks of affection. The women carried their infants 
aloft in their arms, and upon their shoulders, displaying to us 
with tears in their eyes the linen garments in which they were 
clothed. We bid adieu to King Bardus and 0,nfi, who could 
hardly summon up sufficient resolution to meet the moment of 
separation. We perceived them for a long time on the most ele- 
vated pinnacle of the city, waving their hands in token of saying 

Scarcely had we put off from the island, when the friends of 
Toratan crowded into boats innumerable, and rushed out to at- 
tack us with tremendous shouts. But at sight of the hallowed 
shrub which I carried in my hands, and which I raised into 
the air, they fell prostrate on the bottom of their barges, as if 
they had been struck with a power divine ; such is the force 
of superstition over minds enslaved. We accordingly passed 
through the midst of them without sustaining the slightest 

We forced our way up the river during the course of a day. 
After this, having gone ashore, we bent our course toward the 
West across forests almost impracticable. Their soil was here 
and there covered with trees, laid low by the hand of Time. It 
had throughout a carpeting of moss thick and spongy, into 
which we sometimes sunk up to the knees. The roads which 
divide those forests, and which servers boundaries to different 
of the Gauls, were so little frequented, that trees of con- 
siderable size had shot up in the midst of them. The tribes 
which inhabited them were still more savage than their Country. 
They had no other temples except some thunder-struck vew- 
tive, or an aged oak in the branches of which some Druid had 
ited an ox-head with the horns. When in the night-time the 
. e of those trees was agitated by the Winds, and illumined 
by the light of the Moon, they imagined that they saw the 
Spirits and the Gods of their forests. Upon this, seized with a 
religious horror, they prostrated themselves to the ground, and 
ed with trembling those vain phantoms of their own imagi- 


nation. Our guides themselves never durst have traversed 
those awful regions, which religion had rendered formidable in 
their eyes, had not their confidence been supported much more 
by the branch of mistletoe with which I was armed, than by all 
our reasonings. 

We did not find in the course of our progress through the 
Gauls any appearance of a rational worship of the Deity, ex- 
cepting that one evening, on our arrival at the summit of a 
snow-covered mountain, we perceived there a fire, in the midst 
of a grove of beech-trees and firs. A moss-grown rock, hewn 
out in form of an altar, served as a hearth to it. It was sur- 
rounded with large piles of dry wood, and with a large assort- 
ment of bear and wolf-skins, suspended on the boughs of the 
neighbouring trees. In every other respect there was not per- 
ceptible all around this solitude, through the whole extent of the 
Horizon, any one trace of human habitation. Our guides in- 
formed us, that this spot was consecrated to the God who pre- 
sides over travellers. The word consecrated made me shu 
" Let us remove hence," said I to Cephas. " Every alt;ir in 
" the Gauls excites a thousand suspicions in my breast. I will 
" henceforward pay homage to the Deity only in the temnles 
" of Egypt." Cephas replied : " Reject every religion which sub- 
" jects one man to another in the name of the Divinity, were it 
" even in Egypt ; but in everyplace where the good of Man is 
" studitd GOD is acceptably worshipped, were it even in Gaul. 
r In every place the happiness of Men constitutes the Glory of 
" God. For my part, I sacrifice at every altar where the mise- 
" ries of the Human Race are relieved." As he said these 
words, he prostrated himself and put up his prayer: he then 
.threw into the fire a log of fir, and some branches of the juni- 
per-tree, which perfumed the air as the sparks with a crackling 
noise ascended upward. I imitated his example ; after which 
we went and seated ourselves at the foot of the rock, in a place 
carpeted over with moss, and sheltered from the North-wind ; 
and having covered ourselves with the skins which were sus- 
pended on the trees, notwithstanding the severity of the cold 
we passed the night in a comfon ;ree of warmth. O 

return of the morning, our guides we had to 

march all the day long over similar heights, without finding 


wood, or fire, or habitation. We presented our acknowledg- 
ments a second time to Providence, for the asylum so seasona- 
bly afforded us ; we replaced the skins on the trees with a reli- 
gious exactness ; we threw fresh wood upon the fire ; and be- 
fore we proceeded on our way, I engraved the following words 
on the bark of a beech-tree : Cephas and amasis, in this 


We passed successively through the territories of the Carnu- 
tes, # the Cenomanes,the Diablintes, the Redons, the Curiosolites, 
the inhabitants of Dariorigum, and at length we arrived on the 
Western extremity of Gaul, among the Veneti. The Veneti 
are the most expert navigators of those Seas. They have even 
founded a colony which bears their name, at the bottom of the 
Adriatic Gulf. As soon as they were informed of our being 
the friends of King Bardus, they loaded us with innumerable 
demonstrations of kindness. They proffered to carry us di- 
rectly to Egypt, as far as which they have extended their com- 
merce ; but as they likewise trade to Greece, Cephas said to me : 
" Let us visit Greece ; we shall there find frequent opportuni- 
41 ties of returning into thy Country. The Greeks are the friends 
" of the Egyptians. To Egypt they are indebted for the most 
" illustrious of the founders of their cities. Cecrops it was who 
" gave Laws to Athens, and Inachus to Argos. At Argos it 
" is that Agamemnon reigns, whose renown is diffused over the 
" face of the whole Earth. There shall we behold him crowned 
" with glory, in the bosom of his family, and encompassed with 
" Kings and Heroes. If he is still engaged in the siege of Troy, 
" his ships will easily convey us to thy Country. Thou hast 
" seen the most refined state of civilization in Egvpt, and the 
** grossest barbarism in the Gauls ; thou wilt find in Greece a 
" politeness and an elegance which will charm thee. Thou 

* The Canratea were the inhabitants of the Pays Charlrain, Cenomanes, 

of Mans, and the Diablintes, those of the adjacent country. The Re- 

of Rennes, had the Curiosolites in their vicinity • 

and the tribes of Dariorigum were neighbours to the Veneti, who inhabited 

sin Britanny. I, alleged that the Venetians of the Adriatic Gulf, 

n, derive their origin from them. Consult 

ibo, and Danville's Geography. 


" wilt thus have had the spectacle of the three periods through 
a which most Nations pass. In the first, they are below Na- 
" ture ; they come up to her in the second ; and in the third they 
" go beyond her." 

The views of Cephas were too congenial with my passion for 
glory, to admit of my neglecting an opportunity of forming an 
acquaintance with men so illustrious as the Greeks, and especi- 
ally one so renouned as Agamer.nion. I waited with impatience 
for the return of a season favourable to navigation, for we had 
reached the Veneti in Winter. We passed that season in an 
incessant round of feasting, conformably to the custom of those 
nations. As soon as Spring returned we prepared to emb; 
Argos. Before we took our departure from the Gauls, we learn- 
ed that our disappearing from Lutetia had restored tranquillity 
tothe States of King Bardus ; but that his daughter, the )>• du- 
tiful Got'iOy had retired with her women into the Temple of Isis, 
to whom she had consecrated herself ; anil that night and day 
she made the forest resound with her melodious songs. 

I sensibly felt the mortification of this excellent Prince, who 
lost his daughter from the very circumstance of our arrival in 
his Country, an event which was one day to crown him with im- 
mortal honour ; and I myself experienced the truth of the an- 
cient maxim, That public consideration is to be acquired only 
at the expense of domestic felicity. 

After a navigation somewhat tedious we passed the Straits 
of Hercules. I felt myself transported with joy at the sight of 
the sky of Africa, which recalled to my thoughts the climate of 
my native Country. We descried the lofty mountains of Mau- 
ritania, Abila situated in the mouth of the Strait of Hercules, 
and those which are called the Seven Brothers, because they 
are of the same elevation. They are covered from their sum- 
mit down to the very water's edge, with palm-trees loaded with 
dates. We discovered the fertile hills of Numidia, which clothe 
fhemselves twice a year with harvests that rise under the shade 
of the olive-tree ; while studs of magnificent coursers pasture 
at all seasons in the ever-green vallies. We coasted along the 
shores of Syrtis, where the delicious fruit of the Lotos is produ- 
ced, which as we are told make strangers who eat it to forget 
their Country. We soon came in sight of the sands of Lj 


in the midst of which are situated the enchanted gardens of the 
Hesperides ; as if Nature took delight in making Countries the 
most unproductive to exhibit a contrast with the most fertile. 
We heard by night the roaring of tigers and lions, which came 
to bathe themselves in the Sea j and by the dawning light of 
Aurora we could perceive them retiring toward the mountains. 

but the ferocity of those animals comes not up to that of ihe 
men who inhabit this region of the Globe. Some of them im- 
molate their children to Saturn; others bury their women alive 
in the tombs of their husbands. There are some who, on the 
death of their Kings, cut the throats of all who served them 
when alive. Others endeavour to allure strangers to their 
shores, that they may devour them. We had one day nearly 
fallen a prey to those abominable men-eaters ; for while wc 
were ashore, and peaceably exchanging with them some tin and 
iron for different sorts of the excellent fruits which their Coun- 
try produces, they had contrived an ambush to intercept our 
getting on board, which with no small difficulty we escaped. 
After running such a dreadful risk, we durst not venture again 
to disembark on such inhospitable shores, which Nature has to 
no purpose placed under a sky so serene. 

I was so irritated at the cross accidents of an expedition un- 
dertaken for the service of Mankind, and especially at this last 
instance of perfidy, that I said to Cephas: " The whole Earth I 
" believe, Egypt excepted, is peopled with barbarians. I am 
" persuaded that absurd opinions, inhuman religions, and fero- 
" cious manners, are the natural portion of all Nations ; and it 
w is undoubtedly the will of Jupiter, that they should be for 
" ever abandoned to these ; for he has subdivided them by so 
" many different languages, that the most beneficent of Man- 
" kind, so far from having it in his power to reform them, is 
" not capable of so much as making himself understood by 
" them." 

Cephas thus replied : " Let us not accuse Jupiter of the ills 
" which infest Mankind. The human mind is so contracted, 
" that though we sometimes feel ourselves much incommoded, 
" it is impossible for us to imagine how we could mend our 
" condition. i( we remove a single one of the natural evils of 
' ; which we so bitterly complain, we should behold starting up 


" out of it's absence a thousand other evils of much more dan- 
" serous consequence. Nations do not understand each other ; 
" this vou allege is an evil : but if all spake the same language, 
" the impostures, the errors, the prejudices, the cruel opinions 
" peculiar to each Nation, would be diffused all over the Earth. 
" The general confusion which is now in the words, would in 
" that case be in the thoughts." He pointed to a bunch of grapes : 
" Jupiter" said he, "has divided the Human Race into va- 
" rious languages, as he has divided that cluster into various 
" berries containing a great number of seeds, that if one part 
" of these seeds should become a prey to corruption, the other 
" might be preserved.* 

" Jupiter has divided the languages of men only for this end, 
" that they might always be enabled to understand that of Na- 
" ture. Nature universally speaks to their heart, illumines rea- 
" son, and discloses happiness to them in a mutual commerce of 
" kind offices. The passions of Mankind, on the contrary, as 
" universally corrupt their hearts, darken their understanding, 
" generate hatreds, wars, discords and superstitions, by disclos- 
" ing happiness to them Only in their personal interest, and in 
" the depression of another. 

" The division of languages prevents those particular evils 
a from becoming universal ; and if they are permanent in a 
" Nation, it is because there are ambitious corps who make an 
'* advantage of them ; for error and vice are foreign to Man. 
" It is the office of virtue to destroy those evils. Were it not 
" for vice there would be little room for the exercise of virtue 
" on the Earth. You are on your way to visit the Greeks. If 
" what is said of them be true, you will find in their manners a 
" politeness and an elegance which will delight you. Nothing 

* Most fruits which contain an aggregation of seeds, as pomegranates, 
apples, pears, oranges, and even the productions of the gramineous plants, 
such as the ear of corn, bear them divided by smooth skins, under frail 
capsules ; but the fruits which contain only a single seed, or rarely two, as 
the walnut, the hasel-nut, the almond, the chestnut, the cocoa, and all the 
kernel fruits, such as the cherry, the plum, the apricot, the peach, bear i? 
enveloped in very hard capsules, of wood, of stone, or of leather, cons ructed 
with admirable art. Nature has secured the preservation of aggr< 
seeds, by multiplying their little cells, and that of solitary seels, by fortify- 
ing' their c: 


" should be comparable to the virtue of their heroes, having 
" passed through the test of long and severe calamities." 

All that I had hitherto experienced of the barbarism of Na- 
tions, stimulated the ardour which I felt to reach ArgOs, and 
to see the mighty Agamemnon happy in the midst of his family. 
By this time we descried the Cape of Tenarus, and had almost 
doubled it, when a furious gale of wind, blowing from the coast 
of Africa, drove us upon the Strophades. We perceived the 
Sea breaking against the rocks which surround those Islands. 
Sometimes as the billows retired, we had a view of their caver- 
nous foundations: anon, swelling again the surge covered them 
tremendously roaring with a vast sheet of foam. Nevertheless 
our mariners persevered in defiance of the tempest, in attempt- 
ing to make Cape Tenarus, when a violent gust of wind tore 
our sails to pieces. Upon this we were reduced to the neces- 
sity of stopping short at Steniclaros. 

From this port we took the road, resolving to travel to Ar- 
gos by land. It was on our way to this residence of the King 
of Kihgs, my good shepherd, that we had the good fortune to 
meet with you. At present we feel an inclination to accompany 
you to Mount Lyceum, for the purpose of beholding the assem- 
bly of a People whose shepherds display manners so hospitable 
and polite. As he pronounced these last words Amasis looked 
at Cephas, who expressed his approbation of them by an inclina- 
tion of the -head. 

Tirteus said to Amasis : " My son, your relation has deeply 
" affected us ; of this you have had a proof in the tears which 
" we have shed. The Arcadians once were more miserable 
" than the Gauls.* We shall never forget the reign of Lycaon, 

It would appear that the first state of Nations is the state of barbarism. 
We I tempted to believe it, from the example of the Greeks, prior 

t;> Orpheus/ of the Arcadians, under Lycaon ; of the Gauls, under the 
Druids .- of the llomans, prior to Nutna ,■ and of almost all the savage tribes 
of America. 

n persuaded that barbarism is a malady incident to the infancy of Xa- 

, and that it is foreign to the Nature of Man. It is frequently a re-action 

ly of the ills which rising- Nations endure on the part of their enemies. 

These ills inspire them with a vengeance so much the more fierce, in propor- 

titution of their State is more liable to subversion. Accord- 

Muall savage hordes of the New World, reciprocally eat thepri- 

i. III. Hh 


" formerly changed into a wolf as a punishment of his cruelty. 
" But this subject would, circumstanced as we now are, carry 
** us too far. I give thanks to Jupiter for having disposed 

soners taken in war, though the families of the same clan live together in the 
most perfect union. For a similar reason it is that the feebler animals are 
much more vindictive than the powerful. The bee darts her sting into the 
hand of any one who com%s near her hive ; but the elephant sees the arrow 
of the huntsman fly close to him without turning aside out of his road. 

Barbarism is sometimes introduced into a growing State by the individuals 
who join the association. Such was, in it's first beginnings, that of the Ro- 
man People, partly formed of the banditti collected by Romulus, and who did 
not begin to civilize till the times of J\ "urna. In other cases, it commun 
itself, like the pestilence, to a People already under regular government, 
merely from their coming into contact with their neighbours Such was that 
of the Jews, who notwithstanding the severity of their Laws sacrificed their 
children to idols, after the example of the Canaanites. It most frequently 
incorporates itself with the legislation of a People, through the tyranny of a 
despot, as in Arcadia, under Lycuon, and still more dangerously, through 
the influence of an aristocratical corps, which perpetuates it in favour of 
their own authority, even through the ages of civilization. Such are in our own 
days the ferocious prejudices of Religion instilled into the Indians, in other 
respects so gentle, by their Bramins ; and those of honour instilled into the 
Japanese so polished, by their Nobles. 

I repeat it, for the consolation of the Human Race : moral evil is foreign 
to Man, as well as physical evil. Both the one and the other spring out of 
deviations from the Law of Nature. Nature has made Man good. Had she 
made him wicked, she, who is so uniformly consequential in her Works, would 
have furnished him with claws, with fangs, with poison, with some offensive 
weapon, as she has done to those of the beasts whose character is designed 
to be ferocious. She has not so much as provided him with defensive armour 
like other animals ; but has created him the most naked and the most miser- 
able, undoubtedly in the view of constraining him to have constant recourse 
to the humanity of his fellow-creatures, and to extend it to them in his turn. 
Nature no more makes whole Nations of men jealous, envious, malignant, 
eager to surpass each other, ambitious, conquerors, cannibals, than she 
forms Nations continually labouring under the leprosy, the purples, the fever, 
the small-pox. If you meet even an individual, subject to thtse physical evils, 
impute them without hesitation to some unwholesome aliment on which he 
feeds, or to a putrid air which infests the neighbourhood. In like maimer, 
when you find barbarism in a rising Nation, refer it solely to the errors of it's 
policy, or to the influence of it's neighbours, just as you would the mischiev- 
ousness of a child, to the vices of his education, or to bad example. 

The course of the life of a People is similar to the course of the life of a 
man, as the port of a tree resembles that of it's branches. 

I had devoted my attention, in the text, to the moral progress of political 
societies, barbarism, civilization, and corruption I had in this note cast a 


u you, as well as your friend, to pass the approaching day with 
" us on Mount Lyceum. You will there behold no palace, no 
" imperial city ; but still less will you see Savages and Druids : 
" you will behold enamelled verdure, groves, brooks, and shep- 
" herds vying with each other in giving you a cordial welcome. 
" May Heaven incline you to make a longer abode among us ! 
" You will meet to-morrow, at the feast of Jupiter, multitudes 
" of men from all parts of Greece, and Arcadians much better 
u informed than I am, who are undoubtedly acquainted with 
" the city of Argos. For my own part, I frankly acknowledge 
" I never heard mention made either of the siege of Troy, nor 
" of the glory of Agamemnoiu celebrated as you tell me over all 
u the Earth. I have employed myself wholly in promoting the 
" happiness of my family, and that of my neighbours. I have 
" no knowledge except of meadows and flocks. I never ex- 
" tended my curiosity beyond the limits of my own Country. 
" Your's, which has carried you so early in life into the heart of 
" foreign Nations, is worthy of a God, or at least of a King." 

Upon this Tirteus turning to his daughter, said : " Cyanca, 
" bring hither the cup of Hercules" Cyanea immediately rose, 
hastened to fetch it, and with a smile presented it to her father. 
Tirteus replenished it with wine ; then addressing himself to 
the two strangers, said : " Hercules, like you, my dear guests, 
u was a great traveller. Into this hut he deigned to enter ; i 
" he reposed, while he was pursuing for a year together the 
" brazen-footed hind of Mount Erimanthus. Out of this cup 
w he drank : you are worthy of drinking from it after him. I 
u use it only on high festivals, and never present it to any but 
" my friends. No stranger ever drank from it before you." 
lie said, and tendered the cup to Cephas. It was made of the 

mportant, on the natural progress of Man ; childhood, youth, 
maturity, old-age ; hut these approximations have been extended far beyond 
»roper bounds of a simple note. 

des, in order to enlarge his horizon a man must scramble up moun- 
H hich are but too frequently involved in stormy clouds. Let us re-de- 
into the peaceful \alW_is. Let us repose between the declivities of 
; Lyceum, on the banks of the Adielous. If Time, the Muses, and the 
p, Bhall be propitious to these new Studies, it will be sufficient for my 
pencil, and for my ambition, to have painted thi -; and 


wood of the beech-tree, and held a cyathus of wine. Hercuh- 
emptied it at a single draught; But Cephas, Amasis and Tirteus 
could hardly master it, by drinking twice round. 

Tirteus afterwards conducted his guests to an adjoining cham- 
ber. It was lighted by a window shut by a texture of rushes, 
through the interstices of which might be perceived, by the lus- 
tre of the Moon, in the plain below, the islands of the Alpheus. 
There were in this chamber two excellent beds with coverlets 
of a warm and light wool. Then Tirteus took leave of his guests, 
wishing that Morpheus might pour the balm of his gentlest pop- 
py upon their eye-lids. 

As soon as Amasis was left nlonr with Cephas, he spake with 
transports of delight of the tranquillity of this valley, of the good- 
ness of the shepherd, of the sensibility and the graces of his 
youthful daughter, to whom he had never seen any thing once 
to be compared, and of the pleasure which he promised himself 
the next day at the feast of jfupiter, in beholding a whole Peo- 
ple as happy as this sequestered family. Conversation so de- 
lightful might have sweetened the remainder of the night, to 
both the one and the other, fatigued as they were with travel- 
ling, without the aid of sleep, had they not been invited to re- 
pose by the mild light of the Moon, shining through the win- 
dow, by the murmuring of the wind in the foliage of the pop- 
lars, and by the distant noise of the Achelous, the source of 
which precipitates itself roaring from the summit of Mount 




IN my Studies of Nature, published for the first time in 
December, 1784, I formed most of the Wishes which I this 
day present to the Public, in September 1789. I must undoubt- 
edly have fallen into frequent repetitions : but the objects of 
these Wishes, which since the assemblings of the Estates-Gene- 
ral, have become interesting to the whole Nation, are so impor- 
tant that they cannot be presented too often, and so extensive 
that it is always possible to add something new. 

I am well aware that the illustrious Members of our National 
Assembly are pursuing them with signal success. I possess 
not their talents .; but, like them, I love my Country. Notwith- 
standing my incapacity, had health permitted, I would have as- 
pired after the glory of defending with them the cause of Pub- 
lic Liberty : but I have a sentiment of personal liberty so ex- 
quisite and so tormenting, that it is absolutely impossible for me 
to remain in an assembly, if the doors are shut, and unless the 
avenues are so clear as to admit of my going away the instant I 
desire it. This impulse to exercise my liberty never fails to 
seize me the moment I think I have lost it, and becomes so 
impetuous, that it throws me into both a physical and moral 
dy which. I am incapable of supporting. It extends far- 
ther than to the' walls of an apartment. During the commo- 
tions at Paris, (which commenced on the departure of Mr. 
Necker, July 13th, the same day of the month which in the 
preceding year had desolated the kingdom by a hail-storm), 
when they were burning the buildings at the barriers round the 
city, when the air resounded through every street with the 
alarming noise of the tocsin ringing night and day from all the 


church towers at once, and with the clamours of the multitude 
crying aloud that the hussars were already in the suburbs com- 
ing to put all to the fire and sword, God, in whom I had reposed 
my confidence, graciously preserved my mind in tranquillity. 
I composed myself for the event be what it might, though soli- 
tary in a lone house and in a detached street, at the extremity 
of one of the Fauxbourgs. But when the day after, on the cap- 
ture of the Bastile, the withdrawing of the foreign troops whose 
vicinity had excited such dreadful apprehensions, and the esta- 
blishment of citizens, I was informed that the gates of Paris 
were shut, and that no one was permitted to pass, I was instant- 
ly seized with a violent inclination to get out myself. While 
all it's inhabitants were congratulating themselves on the reco- 
ver}- of their liberty, I considered myself as having lost mine ; 
I reckoned myself a prisoner in that vast capital ; I felt myself 
in confinement. My>im agination could not regain it's former 
calmness, till I found, as I was walking on the boulevard of the 
Hospital, a grated iron gate, the lock and bars of which had 
been burst open, and which was not yet guarded : in a moment 
I flew into the fields, and made a hundred steps forward to as- 
sure myself that I had not lost my natural rights, and that I 
was at liberty to go wherever I pleased. Having thus ascer- 
tained my freedom, I found myself perfectly tranquil, and qui- 
etly returned to my tumultuous neighbourhood without feeling 
the least anxiety afterwards to go out again. 

Some days after, when heads cut off at the Place de Greve 
without any form of process, and lists placarded proscribing a 
great many more, filled all thinking persons with apprehension 
that wicked men were going to employ popular vengeance in 
gratifying their private animosities, and that Paris, abandoned 
to anarchy, was on the point of becoming a theatre of carnage 
and horror ; certain friends offered me peaceful and agreeable 
rural retreats, both within the limits of the kingdom and beyond 
them, where I might enjoy the repose so necessary to the pro- 
secution of my studies ; I begged to be excused. I chose rather 
to remain in that great vessel of the capital, battered on every 
side by the tempest, though totally useless in conducting the ma- 
noeuvres, but in the hope of contributing to the general tranquil- 
Iity. I endeavoured accordingly to compose perturbed spirits, 


or to animate the dejected, as opportunity served ; to co-operate 
in person or by my purse to the support of guards so necessary 
to the preservation of the police ; to assist from time to time at 
the Committee of my District, one of the smallest and the most 
intelligent in Paris, to throw in my word when I could; and es- 
pecially to arrange these Wishes for the public felicity, which 
have employed me for six months past. I have relinquished, in 
favour of this darling object, labours more easy, more agreeable, 
and more conducive to my private fortune ; I have kept in view 
only that of the State. 

In an undertaking so far above my ability, I have frequently 
trodden in the footsteps of the National Assembly, and some- 
times I have deviated: but if I had in every instance adopted 
their ideas it would have been totally unnecessary to publish 
mine. They pursue the public good marching along the high 
roads like an embodied army, the columns of which afford 
mutual assistance, and sometimes unfortunately oppose each 
other ; while I, remote from the crowd, without support, but 
without interruption, proceed through by-paths which lead to 
the same destination. They reap, and I glean. I carry then 
to the common heap a few ears picked behind their steps, and 
some out of their track, in the hope that they will condescend 
to bind them up among their sheaves. 

I have, however, to justify myself in having presumed to de- 
viate from the route of the National Assembly, and even from 
their modes of expression. They admit, for example, only two 
primitive powers in the Monarchy, the Legislative and the Ex- 
ecutive. They assign the former to the Nation and the latter to 
the King, hut I conceive in Monarchy, as well as in every 
other species of Government, a third power necessary to the 
support of it's harmony, which I call the moderating. With res- 
pect to this power, Avhich I consider as essential to Monarchy, 
by it alone I conceive the King has the sanctioning of the 
Laws ; lor the Executive Power seems to me to comport only 
with the veto, which at this moment excites remonstrances so 

The veto is so closely attached to the Executive Power, that 

it is vested even in a military Commander in Chief, restricted 

he is to the execution of inhuman orders, or in a tribunal 


charged with the promulgation of unjust edicts. Turenne had 
the right of refusing obedience to the mandate of Louis XIV. 
when commanded to burn the Palatinate ; and every Magis- 
trate, under Charles IX. of publishing the edict of the massa- 
cre of St. Bartholomew, as every Frenchman of executing it. 
Every man possesses the right of refusing to execute a political 
law, when it flies in the face of a Law of Nature. Now the 
King, intrusted with the power of executing laws which he has 
not sanctioned, has a right to employ, as well as a subject, the 
veto in cases where some of those laws may appear to him con- 
trary to the public good, which is the natural law of a State. 

" The National Assembly," I shall be told, "' has decided 
" what was requisite to the happiness of the Nation, and it 
u alone can know what is requisite." But is it not possible for 
an Assembly to be misled? Whole nations have been led 
astray. Look into the history of our own nation ; consult that 
of the world". 

I acknowledge at the same time that the royal veto has some- 
thing extremely harsh in it ; and although in England, the King, 
to soften it, may say ; " I will take it into consideration," Ic 
Ro'i s\ivisera, the words plainly amount to k ' I will not." It is 
undoubtedly alarming for a nation to reflect that a law condu- 
cive to their interests, passed after much discussion by a plurality 
of voices, in an assembly of their deputies brought together not 
without much difficulty, should be all at once reduced to a state 
of non-existence by the veto of the Sovereign, under the influ- 
ence of the opposition party, which will look to this as a last re- 
source. Thus the interests of a whole people may be sacrificed 
to those of a single association, and frequently of a few cour- 
tiers, who have more immediate access to the Prince ; and all 
national efforts, for ages together, may be arrested in an in- 
stant by the simple inert force of the Crown. I am not in the 
least surprised that the apprehension merely of the royal veto 
should have excited in the Palais-Royal a plebeian veto, at least 
equally formidable. 

It is precisely in the view of preventing the veto of the execu- 
tive power in the Sovereign, that I assign to him the sanction of 
the moderating power. These two effects differ as much as the 
causes which produce them, of which I have demonstrated in 


this Work both the difference and the necessity. The veto is a 
negative power which appertains to a slave who feels the autho- 
rity of conscience, as to a despot who has no such feeling: but 
.sanction is an approbative power which appertains only to the 
Monarch. A General possesses his veto, because he will not 
sanction the orders which he has received: a King, as Chief of 
the State, possesses the right of sanction, because he cannot op- 
pose the veto to laws of which he is supposed to have acknow- 
ledged the utility and the necessity. Should the King withhold 
his sanction to a new Law, it must be because he believes it to 
be injurious to the State; in that case he will of course point out 
the mischief likely to ensue ; and it will be amended and modi- 
fied. Sanction is the quiet discussion of a point between a 
father and his children. 

" But," it will be replied, " should the King withhold his, 
u sanction, or the Assembly their amendments, the law will be 
" rendered null and void : refusal to approve a law is to op- 
" pose the execution of it ; the sanction accordingly involves 
" the same difficulties as the veto.'''' To this I reply, that the 
law will not in this case be annulled, as it would be by the veto, 
but it would remain unsanctioned. 

" Here then is a new source of contention between the Peo- 
u pie and their Sovereign, strengthened by the party in Oppusi- 
44 tion." I admit it, but every thing in the World is in a state 
of mutual opposition : elements to elements, opinions to opi- 
nions. From their collision all harmony is produced. Every 
virtue is suspended in equilibria between two contraries. Let 
us maintain then a just medium, as justice is the point in ques- 
tion. Let us be on our guard lest in shunning despotism we 
rush into anarchy. If the chariot inclines too much to one 
side, let us not overset it altogether on the other ; let us resettle 
it on its monarchical axis and it's plebeian wheels, in order to 
restore both it's equilibrium and the power of motion. Let it 
not be imagined that that the Royal sanction itself could leave, 
like the veto, legislative questions not susceptible of solution. It 
cannot happen but that sooner or later the King should give 
way to the reasons which determined the judgment of the As- 
sembly, or the Assembly to those which directed the King as 
the only object of both is the public interest. The thing which 
Vol. III. I i 


perpetuates law-suits among men is pertinacious adherence t<> 
individual interests. They agree instantly where a common 
interest is concerned. Now, the public interest being com. 
mon to the deputies of the Nation and to the Monarch, the dis- 
cussion which the Royal sanction may produce cannot but con- 
duce to the benefit of the legislation. 

But in this balance of opinions respecting the same interest, 
see that the probabilities be found in favour of the decisions of 
the Assembly. Is it probable, in the first place, that a few aris- 
tocrats, after having consented to submit their interests to the 
majority of voices in the National Assembly, which has in like 
manner submitted their own to a similar issue, will go to in- 
trigue with the King, to prevent the effect of the national deli- 
berations, because these were unfavourable to them ? Is it pro- 
bable that the King, out of regard to the interests of those aris- 
tocrats, faithless to their engagements, will refuse to sanction 
laws beneficial to the Nation, called for by a majority of it's 
Deputies, and by a whole united people, capable, in support of 
them, of raising a general insurrection? liesides, the King be- 
ing to give his assent to the laws before the Assemby consents 
to the taxes, should he withhold his sanction from laws voted 
by a majority of the Assembly, is it not more than probable that 
this majority will in their turn withhold from him their sanc- 
tion of the taxes ? I consider with pain, as a civilian, in corn- 
men with the Assembly itself, the effects of the Royal sunrtion, 
as those of a law-suit between the Monarch and the Nation ; 
the event of it may be doubtful ; but it will not be so provided 
the people, in securing it to their Prince, shall have been just and 
loyal toward him. The people may have done very well in 
confiding the discussion of it's laws to the aristooratical powers, 
hitherto the opposers of their interest; why might they not con- 
fide the power of sanction to a friendly power, now that these 
laws are favourable to them i There is no occasion for the peo- 
ple to be distrustful of their King. Their interests are invari- 
ably the same. In a word, the National Assembly having pro- 
claimed Louis XVI. the Restorer of French Liberty, could it 
refuse to him the power of sanctioning those very laws which 
ensure that liberty ? 


The Royal sanction is necessary to all the powers of the State. 
1. It is a matter of right, as far as the King is concerned in his 
personal capacity. If the King were not permitted to sanction 
the laws, he would have a more circumscribed prerogative than 
the meanest of his subjects : for every individual has the right 
not only of giving his vote for the establishment of a law, by his 
deputies ; if he finds them bear hard upon him, it is in his power 
to renounce them altogether by abandoning his country, with- 
out waiting for the consent of any one whatever; but this the 
King cannot do without the consent of the Nation, because his 
absence may involve the ruin of the State. 2. The sanction is 
a matter of justice, relatively to the King as Monarch. The 
King being intrusted with the execution of the laws, he is sup- 
posed, as I have already said, to acknowledge, in sanctioning 
them, their utility and necessity. 3. The royal sanction is ne- 
cessary to the tranquillity of the Monarchy. Many aristocrats 
delegated to express the wishes of their body, and members of 
the National Assembly, having declared from it's first opening, 
that they would acknowledge no other authority but that of the 
King, and being now constrained, by a majority of voices of their 
Assembly and the declared sense of the Nation, to sacrifice 
their privileges, might allege that the law which obliges them 
to this is not monarchical, and under that pretext" refuse sub- 
mission to it, which might become the source of many future 
troubles. 4. The Royal sanction is necessary to the perma- 
nency of the laws, and to the respect which is due them, especi- 
ally on the part of the people. This merits very serious consi- 
deration. Though nothing be more respectable in the eves of a 
Monarch himself than the decrees of a Nation assembled in the 
persons of it's Deputies, the people however scarcely see any 
thing more than men like themselves in their own representa- 
tives, and enemies in those of the superior orders. Besides, 
on account of their periodical rotation, they will soon cease to 
see their legislators in their delegates. A river which renovates 
it's waters is always the same river, because the form of it's 
banks undergoes no change ; but an A ssembly which from time 
to time renews it's members, is no longer the same Assembly, 
because the greatest part of the men who compose it may en- 
tertain different opinions, and pursue by and bv new plans. The 


people rest their attention and their respect onlv on immovable 

projects, or what they deem to be such, and which have an im- 
posing influence upon them, from their magnitude or their dis- 
tance. Major e longinquo reverentia; reverence increases as 
the object becomes remote. It is necessary therefore to fix the 
respect of the people on the Throne, to which they have not a 
near access, as on a centre permanent and worthy of all their ho- 
mage. Republican nations have given to their laws the name 
of a single legislator ; such were those of Zaleucus among the 
Locrians, of Lycurgus at Sparta, of Solon at thens ; and mo- 
narchical States, the name of the Monarch who had promul- 
gated theirs, and consequently sanctioned them ; such were 
those of Cyrus in Persia ; of Zoroaster, king of the Bactrians in 
Asia ; of Moses, the leader of the Hebrews ; of Nwna and after- 
wards 'Justinian at Rome ; of Charlemagne in the Western Em- 
pire ; of Saint Louis in France ; of Peter the Great in Russia ; 
of Frederick II. in Prussia: such are the laws of England, first 
promulgated in 1040 under the title of the Laws of King Ed- 
tvard, and afterwards established by the Nation in 1215, under 
the name of the Great Charter. The ancients were so sensible 
of the importance of an august sanction, to render the laws ve- 
nerable in the eyes of the people, that they frequently derived 
their sanction from the Divinity himself. Thus those of Nwna 
were sanctioned by the nymph Egeria; those of Zaleucus by Mi- 
nerva ; those of Mahomet by GOD himself, through the medi- 
ation of ngels: but those legislators, aiming at the acquisition 
of great advantage to themselves, fell into very considerable in- 
conveniencies ; for every species of deception carries it's pun- 
ishment in it's bosom. When those laws came to be inapplica- 
ble to the condition of a people, or when it was expedient to 
apply them to other countries, thev could not be changed, be- 
cause the Deity who had sanctioned them was immutable. For 
this reason the Turks abstained from effecting the conquest of 
several countries, because they contained no running waters for 
their legal ablutions. The case was still worse when nations, on 
becoming enlightened, came to know that the Divinity had not 
interfered in their legislation ; the transition was then easy from 
contempt of the legislator who had imposed upon them, to con- 
)t of the law itself. This has befallen several States and Re- 


Unions, the ruin of which can be ascribed to no other cause. 
Laws sanctioned by a Monarch are not exposed to the same 
danger, for he changes them in concert with his people, as oc- 
casion requires, and renders them permanent simply by demon- 
strating their utility. :"ut as no political law can be good, un- 
less it is founded on the Laws of Nature, and as nothing is per- 
manent without the support of it's Author, it is necessary that 
the King should sanction our code of laws by a religious invo- 
cation, which may consecrate it for ever to the feelings of the 
heart as well as to the light of the understanding. The term 
sanction itself is evidently derived from sanctus, sacred. This 
solemn preamble, which would call for the style of an Orpheus 
or of a Plato, ought to precede, like an antique peristyle, the 
august temple of our laws, reared for the felicity of Man, and 
dedicated to the Eternal, by the Monarch officiating in charac- 
ter of High-priest. 

This is what my conscience obliges me to say respecting the 
interests of the King, which I consider as inseparable from those 
of the People. With regard to the People, toward them all my 
wishes are directed, because I look on them as the principal 
part of the State. Perhaps the affection which I bear them in 
this point of view may have led me to practise illusion on my- 
self. I shall be perhaps reproached with having reckoned too 
confidently on their moderation or their steadiness. It will un- 
doubtedly be objected to me, that, their Representatives, whose 
number I would wish to have increased in the National Assem- 
bly, are already but too powerful, seeing they have effected in 
the State a revolution so great and so important. I have spoken 
of that revolution, which has just taken place, as a necessary 
consequence of the insufficiency of the people's Representatives ; 
and I am persuaded that had they balanced, bv their number, 
the weight of those of the other two orders, no popular insur- 
rection would have taken place. Their despair produced it. It 
is besides a question still to be resolved, whether of the two, 
the army which was called in to overawe the capital, or the peo- 
ple shut up in it, first disturbed the equilibrium of powers 
among the Deputies of the three Orders. It would be a farther 
lion of difficult discussion, whether the Clergy and Nobility 
would not have departed more widely from the spirit of mode- 


ration than the People, if, like them, they had possessed the 
plenitude of power. The war of the line and that of the Fronde 
(the country party, in opposition to the court) which had nothing 
in view but the interests of privileged Orders or of Princes 
have wasted incomparably more blood, and in a manner much 
more illegal, than the insurrection of the people which has the 
public interest for it's object. It would be unjust to charge to 
their account the commotions excited by the dearth of corn, or 
the highway robberies committed in several of the provinces. 
Most of those disturbances have been stirred up by their ene- 
mies, in the view of dividing them, and of arming them against 
each other. One thing is certain, they have every where, with 
all their might, opposed those disorders. 

Now that the People of France have recovered their liberty 
by their courage, they must shew themselves worthy of it by 
their wisdom. They ought to reject with horror those illegal 
proscriptions which would precipitate themselves into the crimes 
of high-treason which they mean to punish : they ought to be on 
their guard against the zeal which transports them, and for the 
sake of their own interest call in the prudence of the Laws ; for 
nothing more is wanting than a calumny infused by an enemy 
into their minds, inspired by the love of the public good, to in- 
duce them with their own hands to lay low the head of the most 
valuable citizen. 

O People of Paris, who serve as an example to the inhabitants 
of the Provinces ; People ingenious, easy, good, generous, who 
draw into your bosom the men of all nations by the urbanity of 
your manners, reflect that to this urbanity you have at all times 
been indebted for your moral liberty, preferred by republicans 
to their civil liberty itself. You have just burst asunder the 
chains of despotism ; take care that you forge not for yourselves 
others still more insupportable, those of anarchy. The former 
gall only on one side, the latter in every direction at once. It is 
your union which has constituted your force, which nothing 
could resist. But it is not to force that GOD gives a durable 
empire, it is to harmony. By their harmony little things adhere 
and become great ; and it is frequently by means of their force 
that great things separate, clash, break in pieces, and become 
small. • Whence arise so manv pretensions of individuals, of 


associations, of districts, of motions and emotions ? Would you 
make threescore cities of one city j and after your example will 
not the provinces make threescore republics in the kingdom ? 
What in that case would become of the Capital ? Commons of 
Paris, in multiplying your laws, you will multiply your bonds ; 
by dividing you will enfeeble yourselves ; by running every one 
to liberty in his own way, you may fall one after another into 
slavery, or, what is still worse, into tyranny. What have you at 
this day to fear, yourselves excepted i Your principal enemies 
are dispersed ; your great Minister of the Finances has been 
restored to your wishes, and together with him co-operate in 
perfect concert the other Ministers of the Crown, animated 
with the same zeal to promote your happiness ; the two first 
orders of the State have made you sacrifices even beyond your 
desires ; the royal troops have taken the oath of fidelity to you, 
and you have national troops entirely under your own com- 
mand ; your King merits your complete confidence, not only as 
having directed or prepared these dispositions, but as having 
unreservedly given himself up to your disposal, in coming with- 
out guards, and without protection, into the midst of your Ca- 
pital when in a state of confusion, to implore the return of your 
affection, as a father who had never withdrawn his from you, 
and who, beholding you armed with hostile weapons of every 
sort, might well doubt whether he were again to find in you the 
children whom he sought. For the love of harmony, without 
which there is no salvation for a people, repose the care of your 
interests on the vigilance of your districts, composed of your 
committees ; let your districts, on their part, rely, for the unity 
of their operations, on the wisdom of your Municipal Assem- 
bly, formed of your Deputies, whose foresight, zeal and cou- 
rage, so well directed by the tv/o virtuous Chiefs whom vou 
have yourselves chosen, have preserved you from the pillage 
and famine with which you were threatened. Let your Muni- 
cipal Assembly confide, in it's turn, in the intelligence and jus- 
tice of the National Assembly, which you have, conjointly with 
the other Communes of the Kingdom, entrusted with the re- 
i of your grievances, and invested with legislative power. 
On this august Assembly above all you ought to establish your 
security, for it's sublime employment is to promote the happi- 


ness of the kingdom at large, by connecting with your interests 
those of Associations, of Provinces and of Nations, by a Con- 
stitution sanctioned by the King, the august and essential Chief 
of the Monarchy. Finally, you ought to repose entire confi- 
dence in the Providence of the Author of Nature, who frequent- 
ly paves the way, through the midst of calamity, to the attain- 
ment of great national felicity, as the fecundity of Autumn is 
prepared by the rigours of Winter; and, who, in bestowing on 
you, after a year singularly calamitous, the most abundant har- 
vest ever known, is already pouring down his benediction on a 
Constitution to be founded on his Laws. Happy if from the bo- 
som of my solitude, and the storms which have disturbed it, I 
could furnish toward this vessel to which our destiny is commit- 
ted, already on the stocks, and on the point of launching for a 
voyage of ages, I presume not to say a sail or a mast, but the 
simplest utensil that the ship needs. 


ON the first of May of this year 1789, I went down at Sun- 
rise into my garden, to see in what state it was after such a 
dreadful Winter, in which the Thermometer fell, December 
31st, to 19 degrees under the freezing point. I called to re- 
membrance, as I descended, the destructive hail-storm of July 
13th, which had spread over the whole Kingdom, but which 
through the kindness of Providence had passed over the suburb 
where I reside, without doing any mischief. I said to myself : 
" This time nothing in my little garden can have escaped a 
" Winter severe as those of Petersburg." 

As I entered no cole-wort was to be seen, no artichoke, no 
white-jasmine, no narcissus : almost all my pinks and hyacinths 
had perished ; my fig-trees were dead, as well as my sweet- 
scented laurels, which used to flower in the month of January. 
As to my young ivies, the branches of most of them were dried 
up, and their foliage of the colour of rust. 

The rest of my plants however were in good health, though 
their vegetation was retarded more than three weeks. My beds 
of strawberries, violets, thymes, primroses, were all over dia- 
pered with green, white, blue and crimson ; and my hedges of 
honey-suckles, raspberries, gooseberries, rose-bushes and lilachs, 
were all verdant with leaves and flower-buds. My alleys of 
vines, apple-trees, pears, peaches, plums, cherries and apricots, 
were all in blossom. The vines indeed were only beginning to 
shew the parts of fructification, but the fruit of the apricot-tree 
was already formed. 

At this sight I thus reflected : « Calamity is good for some- 
1 The disasters which befal one Country may prove be- 
" nefits to another. If all the plants of southern Europe are un- 
" able to stand the Winters of France, it is evident that manv 

Vol. in. Kk 


" of the fruit-trees of France are able to resist the Winters of 
" the North. In the gardens of Petersburg it is possible to 
" cultivate the cherry, the early peach, the green-gage, the apri- 
" cot, the apricot-peach, and all the fruits capable of ripening in 
" the course of a Summer ; for the Summer is still warmer there 
" than at Paris." This reflection afforded me so much the more 
pleasure, that I had seen at Petersburg, in 1 765, no other trees 
but the pine, the service, the maple, and the birch. 

Though I have on the face of the Globe no other landed pro- 
perty except a small house, with the little garden of the eighth 
part of an acre belonging to it, in the Fauxbourg-Saint-Mar- 
ceau, I take pleasure in employing my thoughts there about the 
interests of the Human Race ; for Mankind has at all seasons, 
and in all places, paid attention to mine. It is certain that my 
cherry-trees came originally from the Kingdom of Pontus, 
whence Litculhis transported them to Rome after the defeat of 
Mithridatcs. I have no doubt that my apricot-trees, the fruit of 
which is called in Latin malum armeniacum, are descended graft 
after graft, from a tree of that species brought by the Romans 
from Armenia. If the testimony of Pliny is to be relied on, 
my vines derive their origin from the Archipelago, my pear- 
trees from Mount Ida, and my peaches from Persia, after those 
countries had been subjugated by the Romans, whose custom it 
was to carry not only the Kings but the trees of their enemies 
in triumph into their own Country. As to the articles which I 
more habitually use, I certainly am indebted for my tobacco, 
my sugar and my coffee, to the poor negroes of Africa, who 
cultivate them in America, under the whips of Europeans. My 
muslin ruffles come from the banks of the Ganges, which our 
wars have so frequently desolated. With respect to my books, 
my most delicious enjoyment, I lie under obligation for them to 
the men of all Nations, and undoubtedly likewise to their mis- 
fortunes. I ain bound therefore to interest myself in all man- 
kind, seeing they are labouring for me, all over the Earth, and 
as I have reason to hope that those who preceded me may have 
contributed to my felicity principally by their own miseries, I 
in like manner may contribute by mine toward the happiness of 
ihose who are to survive me. 


It cannot be made a question that I owe the first expressions 
of my gratitude to the persons to whom I stand indebted for 
the first great supplies of life, such as those who prepare for me 
my bread and my wine, who spin and weave my linen and other 

clothing, who defend my possessions, Sec I mean the men of 

my own Nation. 

In meditating therefore on the revolutions of Nature which 
had desolated France last year, I turned my thoughts to 
those of the State which had accompanied them, as if every 
human calamity were following in a train. I call to memorv 
the imprudent Edict which had permitted the exportation of 
grain, at a time when we had not made sufficient provision for 
home consumption ; that public bankruptcy which had hung 
lowering over our fortunes, while the tremendous hail-cloud 
was ravaging our plains ; the total exhaustion of our finances, 
which had given a death-wound to many branches of our Com- 
merce, as that dreadful Winter had to many of our fruit-trees ; 
finally, that infinite number of poor workmen whom the con- 
currence of so many disasters must have destroyed by cold, by 
famine, and every other species of wretchedness, but for the re- 
lief administered by their compatriots. 

The Minister of the Finances then occurred to my mind, 
whose return has re-established the Public Credit, and has 
proved to us like that of the morning-star after a stormy night : 
from him my thoughts turned to the States-General, who were 
going with the Spring to renovate the face of things, and I said to 
myself: " Kingdoms have their seasons, as the Plains have theirs ; 
" they have their Winter and their Summer, their hail-storms 
" and their refreshing dews : the Winter of France is past, her 
kt Spring is returning/' On this, animated with hope, I sat 
down at the extremity of my garden, on a little bank of turf 
and trefoil, under the shade of an apple-tree in blossom, op- 
posite to a hive, the bees of which were fluttering about on all 
■ides with a humming noise. 

At sight of those bees so industrious, whose hive had no 
other shelter during the Winter but the hollow of a rock, I re- 
collected that they had not swarmed in the month of June, and 
ihat this had been the case with most of those of the kingdom, 


as if they had foreseen that they would have need to be assem- 
bled in great numbers, in order to keep themselves warm dur- 
ing the rigour of an extraordinary Winter. On the other hand, 
as I had withdrawn from mine no part of their honey, and as 
they never export any themselves, they had passed in an abun- 
dance of provisions a season in which multitudes of my coun- 
trymen had been pinched with want. On observing that the 
instinct of those little animals had surpassed the intelligence of 
man, I said within myself : " Happy were it for the Societies 
" of the Human Race, did they possess the wisdom of those of 
" bees !" and I began to form Wishes in behalf of my Country. 

I represented to myself the twenty-four millions of men 
which are said to constitute the population of France, not as 
the sage bees which come into the World in full possession of 
all their instinct, but as a simple individual, who has existed 
for more than three thousand years past, and who, as being 
Man, acquires experience only by passing through a long series 
of woes, of errors and of infirmities. 

At first a child during the time of the ancient Gauls, he was 
for many ages in swaddling clothes, begirt by the Druids with 
the bands of superstition ; then a stripling under the Romans, 
who subdued and polished him, he acquired the knowledge, 
under the heavy yoke of his masters, of the Arts, of the Sci- 
ences, of the Language and of the Laws which continue to go- 
vern him to this day : afterwards, become a young man under 
the undisciplined Franks, who confounded themselves with 
him, he abandoned himself, during their anarchy, to all the vio< 
lence of youth, and passed a great many years in the madness 
of civil war. Finally, from the days of Charlemagne, illumi- 
nated with some rays of light, by the revival of letters which 
began to be naturalized under Francis I. like a young man who 
is forming himself for the commerce of the world, he pursued 
the pleasures of love and glory. His taste for gallantry and 
heroism refined under Henry IV. and arrived at perfection 
under Louis XIV. At this last era, the love of advantageous 
conquest seemed principally to engage his attention ; he became 
ambitious like a man with whom the fervor of youth is over, 
and who is looking about for a solid establishment. Cut soon 
convinced by experience that a man cannot find his own happi- 


ness by doing mischief to another, he began to apply himself to 
the pursuit of his true interests, to his A griculture, his Manu- 
factures, his Commerce, his High Roads, his Colonial Estab- 
lishments, &c... He then found the necessity of shaking off the 
prejudices of infancy, the false views of childhood, the vani- 
ties of youth, and thus entered into the age of maturity. His 
reason made new progress from year to year. He is become 
sensible at this day, under Louis XVI. that the glory of his 
Kings consists onlv in his felicity. For his own part, he is 
more concerned about the means of leading a calm than a splen- 
did, a comfortable than a vain-glorious life. 

One might pursue through every age the periods of his cha- 
racter in those of his manners and dress. In the time of the an- 
cient Gauls, almost naked like an infant, and without any covering 
to his head but the hair, he wore only a girdle. Under the Ro- 
mans, he dressed himself in a gown and short vest like a student. 
Continually in armour under the Franks, he clad himself in 
arm-pieces, thigh-pieces, a coat of mail and a helmet. From 
Francis I. to Henry IV. and even to Louis XIV. he arrayed 
himself in a trimmed doublet, in ruffs, in feathers, in trunk- 
hose, in ribands, without however laying aside his sword, like 
a young man who is making love. Under Louis XIV. become 
more grave, he added to his dress large rolling stockings, and 
an enormous periwig. At present, like a man arrived at the 
staid period of life who studies his convenience, he prefers a 
hat upon his head to one under his arm, a cane to a sword, and 
a cloke to a suit of armour. 

Whilst the French Nation was disposing itself by manners 
and philosophy for a life of greater happiness, and for a nation,) 
consolidation, Administration, subjected to ancient forms, always 
followed it's ancient course. On every revolution of the public 
mind, it had adopted new laws without abrogating the old, had 
incurred the pressure of new wants without retrenching super- 
fluities, and bestowed more attention on the fortune of courtiers 
than on that of subjects. Thus, from incoherency to incoheren- 
Irom impost to impost, from debt to debt, Government found 
itself without money and without credit, with a people destitute 
of means. It then felt itself under the necessity of assembling 
the States-General, to preserve from universal ruin the nation 


at large, of which the People is every where the fundamental 

This People, nevertheless, arrived at majority through so 
many ages of experience and of misfortune, still drags after it 
the leading strings of childhood. Different corps have present- 
ed themselves, alleging that the charge of the public pupillage 
was committed to them, and have pretended to bring it back to 
the ancient forms of the monarchy, that is, to replace it, with it's 
illumination, it's extent, and it's power, in the same cradle in 
which it was so long feeble, imposed upon and miserable. 

But what corps of the monarchy could at this day be brought 
back to it's ancient forms ? To begin with him who is the au- 
gust chief of it, Could the King be brought back to the time 
when the People in conjunction with the army elected him in 
the field of Mars, raising him aloft on a buckler ? And suppos- 
ing Louis XVI. himself were disposed to descend from the 
throne in order to re-establish the People in their ancient rights, 
must he not throw himself at their feet, to beseech them not to 
drive him into the horrors of those civil wars which polluted 
with blood the early ages of the Monarchy, in settling the elec- 
tion of their Kings ? Would the Clergy be disposed to return to 
the ancient times when they preached the Gospel to the Gauls, 
in the attire of Apostles, bare-footed, in a simple robe, with a 
traveller's staff in their hand, become through the munificence 
of that very People a pontifical crosier ? Would the Nobilitv 
wish to see those ancient times return, when they put themselves 
into the service of the great for the sake of protection and 
bread, ready at all times to shed their blood in quarrels that did 
not concern them ? Let them form a judgment of the state of 
their ancestors under the feudal Government, by that of the 
Polish Nobility of modern times. In a word, would the Par- 
liament itself wish to return to those times, not so very ancient, 
when the greatest part of it's members were merely the secre- 
taries and agents of the Grandees, who then could not so much 
as write, and valued themselves upon it ? 

Feeble Man is universally searching for repose. If he wants 

laws, he rests the care of his legislation on a Legislator. If he 

needs instruction, he casts the care of it on a Teacher. Every 

he is establishing a basis whereon to support his weak- 


aess ; but Nature every where subverts it, and forces him, after 
her own example, to get up and combat. She herself has com- 
d this Globe and it's inhabitants only of contraries, which 
are maintaining an incessant struggle. Our soil is formed of 
earth and water ; our temperament of hot and cold ; our day of 
light and darkness ; the existence of vegetables and animals of 
their youth and of their old age, of their loves and of their 
strifes, of their life and of their death. The equilibrium of be- 
ings is established only on their collisions. Nothing is durable 
but their lapse, nothing immutable but their mobility, nothing 
permanent but their combination ; and Nature, who is every 
instant varying their forms, has no constant laws but those of 
their happiness. 

As for ourselves, already so far removed from the ancient 
Laws of Nature, by the very laws of our social union, in which 
the ancient rights of man are misunderstood, our opinions, our 
manners, our usages are varying from year to year. Ages car- 
ry us along, and change our form to the worse without inter- 
ruption, by hurrying us forward to futurity. To recall to the 
ancient forms of it's original a People illuminated, powerful, im- 
mense, is like forcing back an oak into the acorn from which it 

How is it possible then that our Kings should wish to recall 
the People of France to their ancient forms, that is, to their an- 
cient errors and their ancient ignorance ? Is it not to what they 
have produced in later ages, in other words, to the last fruits of 
their industry, that our Kings, who formerly drank from an elk's 
horn, wandered up and down through the forests of the Gauls, 
traversing from time to time their unpaved capital in a car drawn 
by oxen, that they are indebted at this day for the elegant de- 
lights of their chateaux and the magnificence of their equipages I 
Is it not by the tardy lessons of their experience, that they are 
no longer under apprehension of being dethroned by the Mayors 
of their Palaces, and that they and their successors owe their 
firm establishment on the throne, conformably to laws unchange- 
able as the love of that enlightened People ! — O Henri/ IV ! 
What must have become of your rights, attacked at once by 
Rome, by Spain, and by the ambitious Grandees of your own 
Kingdom, without the love of your People, who, in face of the 


ancient forms which would have placed you in opposition to 
yourself, called upon you to deliver them from their t\ rants I 
How could the Clergy, the Ministers of a Religion breathing 
good-will to Mankind, wish to subject to the ancient forms of 
Druidism, the French nation under the reign of Louis XVI i It 
is that same people who, ranging themselves in crowds around 
the first Missionaries ol the Gauls, made their barbarous Chiefs 
to bend under the yoke of Christianity. It was the People who, 
by the all-powerful influence of their opinions elevated the 
abbey in opposition to the castle, and the steeple to the tower. 
They opposed the crosier to the lance, the bell to the trumpet, 
and the legends of the Saints to the archives of the iiarons ; 
monument against monument, bronze against bronze, tradition 
against tradition. How could the Nobility of our days look upon 
the People as blighted from the earliest antiquity by the feudal 
power of their ancestors, when they themselves reckon in their 
own order so few families which count pedigree beyond the 
fourteenth century ? But were it true that their ancestors had 
of old time reduced the people to servitude, how durst they at 
this day exercise their ancient privileges upon that same people, 
not for having formerly defended or protected them, as the No- 
bles of every Nation ought to do, but for having conquered and 
oppressed them ; not for having served but enslayed them ; 
not as the descendants of their Patricians, but of their Tyrants? 
Were these the titles which gave distinction in their eyes to the 
Bayards, the Duguesclins^ the Crillom, the Monlmorencis, who 
performed so many gallant actions for the sake of living in their 
memory down to the present day ? What do I say ! Could our 
Noblesse, now so replete with humanity, and with real honour, 
in an enlightened age, despise that multitude of good and peace- 
able men who devote themselves to minister to their pleasures, 
after having provided for all their necessities, and from the mass 
of which issue those brave grenadiers, who, after having opened 
to them the path which leads to honours at the price of their 
own blood, return to their plough, to serve in obscurity that same 
Country which dispenses her rewards with such partiality i Fi- 
nally, How could the Parliament reduce to the ancient forms of 
servitude, a people which has conferred upon them in some sort 


the tribunitial power, and from whose bosom they themselves 
have sprung ? 

Is it really true, after all, that the People of France have been 
always under the feudal tutelage of their Chiefs ? Certain wri- 
ters have advanced that they were originally slaves. But whe- 
ther their origin be referred to the time of the Gauls, of the 
Romans, or of the Franks, which are the three grand epochs of 
their history, it will be found that they were always free. 

The Gauls, who under Brennus invaded Italy, and burned 
the city of Rome, had a great resemblance to the Savages of 
America, who certainly do not make war as slaves. Slavery 
fixes itself only among rich and policed Nations, as those of 
Asia, and it is the fruit of their despotism which is ever in pro- 
portion to their riches. Poor and Savage Nations are always 
free, and when they make prisoners of war, they incorporate 
them with themselves, unless they sell them, eat them, or offer 
them in sacrifice to their Gods. Opulence makes of the same 
citizens both despots and slaves ; but poverty renders them all 
equal. We see examples of it in the state of society among our- 
selves. The domestics of a rich man, and even his friends, 
when they are poor, come no farther than the antechamber, and 
never appear in his presence but with profound respect ; but the 
domestics of our peasants are familiar with their masters ; sit 
down at table with them, and even obtain their daughters in 

When the Gauls began to become civilized, and to hunt after 
fortune, they enlisted in the Roman armies as free men. Nay, 
I believe it is a remark of Cesar's, that there were no armies 
which did not consist in part of Gaulish soldiers. We see from 
Herodotus and Xeiiophon, that the Greeks, so enamoured of 
their liberty, entered into the service even of the Kings of Persia, 
though the natural enemies of their country. We find a similar 
practice prevailing among the modern Swiss. Such customs are 
common to every free people, and they have no existence in 
.>ns governed by a despotism, or even by an aristocracy. 
You will not see in the pay of anv of the Powers of Europe re- 
giments formed of Russians, of Polanders, or of Venetians. 
The political constitution of the Gauls, it is admitted, grant- 
\ vial unjust prerogatives to the Gaulish Chieftains, and 

Vol. III. L 1 


to their Druids, as has been remarked by Cesar ; and h 
undoubtedly owing to it's anti-popular defects, that it was 
easily subverted by that of the Romans. This much is certain, 
that the Gauls adopted from the Romans, their religion, their 
laws, their customs, nay their very dress. We are partly gov- 
erned at this day by the Jus Romanian, and our Magistrates, 
as well as the Professors in our Universities continue to wear 
the Roman toga. The French language is derived from the 
Latin. These revolutions are by no means the natural effects of 
conquest and of the power of conquering Nations, but proofs 
that the conquered are discontent with their ancient constitu- 
tion. The Romans were jealous of power, but indifferent to 
every other object. The Greeks preserved, under their empire, 
their own Language, their Religion, their Laws and their Man- 
ners, of which we still perceive some traces under the empire 
of the Turks. In a word, a conquered People remains attached 
to it's Constitution, provided they are satisfied with it, to such 
a decree, that they sometimes make th> ir conquerors submit to 
it. This appears from the instance of the Tartars, who have 
always adopted the laws and the customs of China, after having 
made themselves masters of that Empire. Cn the other hand, 
those moral revolutions do not take place in Nations which are 
enslaved. It is very remarkable that the Western Nations of 
Asia have adopted from the Greeks or from the Ro- 

mans who reduced them poke, not even the language. 

The People of Asia speak neither Greek nor Latin. An ensla- 
ved People cleave to their constitution from a spirit oi servi- 
tude, as a free People from the sentiment of liberty, but tl 
last change it when it ceases to give satisfaction. 

Whatever be in this, the Romans granted the rights of Ro- 
man Citizens to the inhabitants of several Cities and even of 
some Provinces of the Gauls ; which they never would have 
done had they been peopled with slaves. Great numbers oi 
Romans afterwards settled in the Gauls. The Emperor Julian 
loved to reside at Paris, " cn accou he said, " of the 

" grave character of it's inhabitants, which had a resembl 
" to his own." The Parisian character 
since the days of Julian, though the climate of Paris 
the same. But it is not climate which forms the character ol 
a People, as so many Authors after Montesquieu have affirmed ; 


it is the Political Constitution. The Gauls, simple and feroci- 
ous under the Druids, were serious under the grave Romans 
always governed by Law, and gay under the Franks, the pas- 
sionate admirers of independence, because, having never en- 
joyed a good Constitution, they changed it at these three 
epochs. Independently of the gaiety of the Gauls, which is to 
be dated no higher than the Francs, and which is a moral proof 
of their liberty, I find another no less conclusive in this, that the 
two Nations no longer bare different names, which is never the 
case when the conquering Nation does not become confounded 
with the conquered : witness, in modern times, the Turks and 
the Greeks, the Moguls and the Nations of Indostan, the Spa- 
niards and the Indians of A merica and Peru, the English and 
the Indians of the East, the inhabitants of our Colonies and the 
Negroes* The Tartars on the contrary who have conquered 
China, confounded themselves with the Chinese, and now form 
only one Nation with them, as well as the Nations of the North 
and of the East, such as the Vandals, the Goths, the Normans 
and others, who amalgamated themselves with the Nations of 
Europe whom they invaded. Besides it is proved by history 
that the Gaulish tribes were free under the first race of the 
Franc Kings, for they elected them in conjunction with the 

At the time of Charlemagne there were great numbers of free- 
men in France. Could it have been with slaves necessarily- 
condemned to ignorance in an age of barbarism, that this great 
Prince was enabled to form his Schools, his Academies and his 
Courts of Justice, the members of which, on the other hand, 
could not possibly issue from that military Noblesse which then 
valued nothing but the glory of arms ? An evident proof of the 
existence of those freemen is, that Charlemagne convoked them 
by name to the Assemblies of his States-General, together with 
the Barons and Bishops. Nay more ; in the Assembly of 806, 
in which, a few years before his death, he divided his domains 
among his three children, by a will confirmed by the great 
Lords of France, and by Pope Leo, " He leaves to his People 
w the liberty of choosing their own Master after the death of 
41 the Princes, provided he were of the blood Royal ;" a liberty 
which the Pi . 't deems worthv of being remarked. 


A part of the country people, it is granted, was subjected to 
bondage with the soil which they cultivated, by Chieftains who 
usurped rights that belonged not to them. Hear what the 
President Heiiault says, on the subject in his particular remarks 
on the Kings of France of the second race : 

" The lands possessed by the Francs, from their irruption 
" into the Gauls, may be distinguished into salique lands and 
" military benefices. 

" The salique lands were those which fell to them by right of 
" conquest, and these were hereditary. The military benefices, 
" instituted by the Romans prior to the conquest of the Francs, 
" were a grant from the Prince, and this grant was only for life : 
" it has communicated it's name to the benefices conferred on 
" Ecclesiastics. The Gauls on their part, united under the 
".same denomination, continued to enjoy, as in the time of the 
" Romans, their possessions in full and perfect liberty, the sa- 
" lique lands excepted, of which the French had taken posses- 
" sion but these must have been inconsiderable, considering 
" how few in number the French were, and the Monarchy how 
" extensive. Both the one and the other, whatever their birth 
" might be, had a right to aspire after employments and Go- 
" vernments, and were actually employed in War, under the 
" authority of the Prince who governed him. The Constitution 
" of France is so excellent, that it never has excluded, and he - 
" ver will exclude Citizens born of the meanest parentage, from 
" dignities the most exalted." ( Maiharel, reply to Hotmai^f; 
".book entitled Franco-Gallia.J 

" Toward the termination of the second race, a new species 
" of possession established itself under the denomination of 
" Fiefs. The Dukes or Governors of Provinces, the Counts or 
" Governors of Cities, the officers of an inferior order, availing 
" themselves of the diminution of the Royal authority, render- 
" ed hereditary in their families the titles which till then they 
" had possessed only for life, and having usurped equally both 
" the lands and the rights, erected themselves into seignorial 
" proprietors of the places where they were only the magistrates, 
" whether military or civil, or both at once. By this was intro- 
" duced a new kind of authoritv into the State, to which was 


" given the name of Suzerainete, Sovereignty, a word, says Loi- 
aUy as strange, as this species of superiority is absurd. 

" Nobility, unknown in France till the time of Fiefs, began 
u with this new kind of Lordship ; so that it was the possession 
" of the lands which made the Nobles, because it conveyed to 
" them a species of subjects denominated vassals, which were 
" transferred in their turn by sub-infeudations j and this right 
" of seigniory was such, that the vassals were obliged, in certain 
" cases, to attend them in War even against the king himself." 

These facts are so well known that they have been quoted in 
a Work published in favour of the Liberty of the People, by a 
Deputy himself of the Noblesse of Vivarais to the States-Ge- 
neral now sitting. I have stated them for the purpose of ma- 
king two reflections of high importance : the first is, that men 
loaded with marks of Royal favour, constituting themselves in- 
to an aristocratical Association, were able to oblige the King's 
subjects to attend them in War against himself: the second, 
that nothing is so easy and so common as for aristocratical con- 
federacies to encroach on the Rights of a People who have no 
representative with their Prince, and on the interests of a Prince 
who has no connexion with the People. France has no need 
to go back to the usurpations of the Dukes, Counts and their 
surrogates during the times of the second race of our Kings ; 
we have seen usurpation still more gross in our own day. The 
Gauls, under the Francs their conquerors, could rise to the first 
dignities of the State, be their birth what it might ; but an ordon- 
nance of the War-department declared, May 22, 1781, under a 
King who loves his People, that no person not noble could be- 
come a military Officer, and this has excluded twenty-four mil- 
lions of subjects from the honour of attaining so much as the 
a-ank of a Lieutenant in the Militia. 

What becomes then at this day of MathareVs axiom on the 
excellence of our Constitution, " which never has excluded, and 
" never will exclude Citizens born of the meanest parentage, 
" from dignities the most exalted." Nevertheless no one of the 
corps who pretend to have it in trust to support our ancient Con- 
stitution, and who wish to bring us back to it, remonstrated 
against this last act of injustice, because it affected only the an- 
cient Rights of the People, and the People have never been able 


to defend their rights, because they have no representatives with 
their Sovereign. 

Be it as it may, what noble family of our days could prove it's 
descent from the usurpers of Nobility toward the termination 
of the second race of our Kings, and what conclusion could be 
deduced from it to militate against the liberty of the People ? A 
family of national Princes of the times of the Gauls, may have 
been reduced to slavery under the Romans ; and a family of 
slaves under the Romans risen to Nobility under the Francs ; 
for conquering Nations, in the view of keeping down the Peo- 
ple they have subdued, frequently adopt the policy of abasing 
that which is exalted, and of exalting that which is low. Where 
is the man capable of proving at this day so much as whether 
he is descended from the Gauls, the Romans, or the Francs ? 
Certain political speculators have imagined that they could re- 
cognize the Gauls in our peasantry, the Romans, in our bur- 
gesses, and the Francs in the nobility. But the Goths, the 
Alains, the Normans, did not they break into the country with 
incursion on incursion, conquest on conquest, and again con- 
found these three orders of Citizens ? Have not the English 
done as much, when they made themselves masters of the 
greatest part of the kingdom ? To the overturnings of war suc- 
ceeded those of commerce. Swarms of Italians, Spaniards. 
Germans, English, settled in our country, and are still every 
day carrying on their establishments. All these Nations have 
blended themselves, by alliances, with every class of our coun- 
trymen, the races of whom have been besides crossed, from the 
most illustrious down to the most humble, by marriages of fi- 
nance : Our people is formed of the ruins of all those nations, 
just as the soil which produces our harvests is composed of the 
wreck of the oaks and firs of our ancient forests. There may 
be perhaps some miserable carman rolling all the year round 
from the bottom of Auvergne up to Paris, and from Paris down 
to the bottom of Auvergne, whose forefathers gave festivals to 
the Roman People, and figured in the Circus in chariots drawn 
by four horses ; and some poor boy who scrambles up our 
chimneys to sweep them, is descended perhaps from those 
haughty Gauls who set Rome on fire, and scaled the Capital. 
We extract with avidity out of the bosom of the earth mutilated 


urns, effaced inscriptions, bronzes corroded by verdigrise, to 
trace on them the names of those ancient families ; but their de- 
scendants are still in life, and wc should present living medals of 
them, did we know how to decipher the impressions. One city 
of Italy values itself on knowing them, and while the whole of 
that country carries on a commerce in it's monuments of stone, 
Milan furnishes for a very little money letters of nobility, and 
ancient armorial bearings, to the most obscure families of Eu- 
rope, on no other foundation than their names. But to what 
purpose this vanity ? Our Nobility no less than our plebeians is 
the work of time which dissolves and re-composes every thing 
with the same elements. If the sands on the sea-shore are a 
wreck of the rocks, these rocks in their turn are only an amal- 
gama of the sands. 

Not only is the People composed originally of the same fami- 
lies with their Clergy and Nobility, but it is the people which 
in particular constitutes the alone cause of the splendour of these 
two bodies ; from it's bosom it is that the men issue who are 
entrusted with their education, and with the sacred trust of in- 
spiring them with sentiments of honour and virtue. The Peo- 
ple is the principal source of intelligence, of industry and power, 
even military power : the People alone makes agriculture and 
commerce flourish. What do I say ? the People is all ; it is 
the national body, of which the two other orders are nothing 
more than accessary members : it can exist without them, but 
without it they are nothing. Never was there seen a Nation 
formed entirely of Priests or of Nobles, but there have been 
many flourishing Nations formed simply of the People. The 
Romans subsisted long without a clerical order. Their Magis- 
trates were their Pontiffs. The greatest part of the Grecian 
Republics, with the same Government, had no body of Nobili- 
ty ; and though certain Writers may have advanced that No- 
bility is the firmest support of Monarchy, it is most undoubted- 
ly certain that the most ancient Monarchy in the world, nameh 
China, never knew what the word Gentleman meant. No one 
in China is noble except the family of Confucius ; and their 
Nobility is founded, not on the subjugation of his fellow-citi- 
zens to Confucius by force of arms, by intrigue or by money, 
but on his having illuminated them by his talents and virtues. 


His descendants, distinguished by certain honours, have in no 
other respect any right to the employments and dignities of the 
empire ; to these they rise like other subjects by personal merit 
only. There is no Nobility in the despotic States of Turkey 
and Persia, where the absolute power of their Monarchs has 
need however of the support of men devoted to them. 

The People on the contrary is to such a degree the basis of 
public power, even in Monarchies, that the State is ruined as 
soon as the Clergy and Nobility have separated their interests 
from those of the people. This is proved by the lower Empire 
of the Greeks, in which these two orders have engrossed every- 
thing, under weak Princes, the People, destitute of patriotism 
and of property, permitted the Turks to subvert the Throne. 
We behold at this day a similar example in the Mogul Empire, 
where the People, separated from it's Bramins and it's Nairs, 
sees with indifference handfuls of Europeans seize the Govern- 
ment and the Country. We ought to recollect ourselves, or ra- 
ther we ought for ever to forget who the persons were that kin- 
dled the civil wars which so long desolated our Monarchy, and 
who did their utmost to subvert it, by inviting even foreign 
troops into it's bosom : assuredly it was not the people. But 
nothing is such a striking proof of the fact, as the events which 
have recently taken place in Poland. In the first place the aris- 
tocratical Noblesse of that Country has in all ages undergone an 
uninterrupted series of misfortune, merely from being disunited 
from their Commonalty ; and if in former times they gained 
some advantages over the Russians, the Prussians, and the 
States of Austria, it was because the Feudal Governments of 
those Countries was then worse than that of Poland. But when 
the Nobility of those Nations was constrained to approach to- 
ward their Commonalty, not by raising them to their own level 
by equitable Laws, but by sinking themselves to the level of the 
People under the pressure of a despotic Government, which 
renders all subjects equal, they formed in conjunction a national 
whole, which the Polish Noblesse, abandoned to itself, was una- 
ble to resist. These last then have seen within these few years 
their Monarchy divided among the three neighbouring Powers, 
who employed against their Patrician Diets, only a very few 
regiments of Plebeian soldiers ; and notwithstanding the favoura- 


ble circumstances of the moment, from the Turkish War in 
which Russia and Austria are embroiled, and from the particu- 
lar kind disposition of the King of Prussia, they make fruitless 
efforts to recover their independence, because they do not call 
the People of their Country to liberty. 

The People then is all in all, even under Monarchies. " The 
" People are not made for Kings, but Kings are made for the 
" People" says Fenelon, after the laws of universal justice ; by 
a still greater force of reasoning, the Clergy and the Nobility 
are. so. To the People every thing ought ultimately to be re- 
ferred, Priests, Nobles, Officers, Soldiers, Magistrates, Minis- 
ters, Kings ; as the feet, the hands, the head, and all the senses 
are referable to the trunk in the human body. The felicity of 
the people is the supreme Law, said the Ancients : Salus po- 
puli suprema, lex esto. 

From the time of the three Persian Potentates, Othanes, Me* 
gabyses and Darius, who reduced to the Democratic, Aristo- 
cratic and Monarchic State, the forms of Government which 
each of them wished to establish in Persia, the question has 
been frequently agitated, which of the three is best ; as if it 
were impossible for any other to exist. For my own part, con- 
sidering how many different forms of Government have since 
that time been settled in every country, not comprehended in 
this enumeration, I believe that a Nation may subsist under 
every kind of form, provided the People be happy, just as a man 
may live any where, under every species of regimen, provided 
his body be in perfect health. 

In fact, the manners of Nations are not less varied than those 
of individuals. There are nations which live in an erratic state 
in deserts, such as the Arabians and Tartars ; and others who 
never go out of their own country, as the Chinese : there are 
some who disperse themselves over the whole earth, as the 
Jews and Armenians ; and others who keep up no intercourse 
with any stranger, as the Japanese : some collect in swarms and 
inhabit cities, as is the case of policed nations ; and others scat- 
ter themselves about in solitary families and live in hippas, as 
the Islanders of New Zealand. 

The Governments of men are no less different than their man- 
ners. To begin with the state of Monarch}-, if there be am 

Vol. III. M m 


Countries governed by one Prince only, some have existed in a 
very flourishing condition where there were two at once, as at 
Lacedemon : nay I believe it would not be impossible to find 
some who may have been excellently governed by a triumvirate. 
As to the nature of monarchies, some are hereditary in the male 
line, from father to son, as our own ; others are so in favour of 
females, and from uncle to nephew, as in certain kingdoms of 
Africa and of .^sia; in others the Sovereign can nominate his 
successor in his own family, as in Turkey, in China and in Rus-. 
bia ; others are elective in a corps of Nobility, by the Nobles 
alone, as in Poland ; others are balanced by a Senate of Priests as 
among the Jews, or by a corps of soldiery, as at Algiers. With 
respect to Aristocracies, there are some who have chosen their 
Rulers in a corps of Religious Nobles and Warriors, as at Mal- 
ta ; others in a corps of enslaved soldiers, as the twelve Beys 
of Egypt, chosen from among the Mamelucs ; others in a Se- 
nate of Civilians as at Genoa and Venice. As to Democracies, 
thev elect their Chiefs in corps of Merchants, as in Holl. nd ; 
or of husbandmen as in Switzerland ; or from among strangers 
who happen to pass by, as the small Republic of Saint-Mario. 
Others have been composed of a mixture of Aristocracy and 
Democracy, as the Republic of Rome ; others of the three Go- 
vernments at once, as in England. 

I observe that all these Governments have equally had feeble 
originals ; that those which have never attained increase, or 
which lost it after being acquired, have had no other object in 
view but the power of a single corps : such have been those of 
Poland, of Genoa, of Venice, of Malta, which have sacrificed 
the interests of their Commonalty to those of their Noblesse. 
I remark, on the contrary, that those which have prospered are 
such as have proposed as their only object the power or the 
happiness of the People : thus Lacedemon gave laws to Greece 
and to a part of Asia. She would have, like Rome, given law 
to the universe, had she comprehended in the number of her 
citizens her husbandmen, the Helotes. It is from the influence 
of the People that Turkey has obtained celebrity by her con- 
quests, China by her duration, Holland by her commerce, Eng- 
land by her maritime power and her superior illumination, and 
Switzerland, still more happy, by her liberty and her repoi 


I farther remark two things of material importance toward 
the prosperity of Nations : 

1. That all those which have flourished are such as were go- 
verned by two opposite powers ; and that those which crumbled 
into ruins have been governed by one only ; because Nature 
forms harmonies only by means of contraries. 

2. That there has existed no one Government, of what na- 
ture soever, but what has had a Chief, under the denomination 
of Doge, of Bey, of King, of Pope, of Sultan, of Emir, of Dai- 
ri, of Emperor, of Stadtholder, of Grand-Master, of Consul, of 
Avoyer, Sec. because every society stands in need of a mo- 

At Lacedemon, the power of the Ephori was opposed to that 
of the two Kings : but for this counterpoise, the two Kings 
would have destroyed themselves from the jealousy of the Go- 
vernment, as was the case in the decline of the Roman Empire, 
when two Emperors on the Throne at once accelerated it's ruin. 
Among the Chinese, the Sovereign is despotic only by the Law 
of the Empire which he causes to be put in execution ; but his 
individual will is so balanced and circumscribed by the tribu- 
nals constituted as conservators of the ancient rites, that with- 
out their concurrence he cannot change the most trivial custom, 
even to the fashion of a garment. On the other hand, respect 
for those tribunals is inspired into the people from the tender- 
est infancy, with such a religious awe, that each of them might 
become master of the Empire, did they not balance one another, 
and unless they had the Emperor as Moderator. The case is 
nearly the same among the Turks, with whom the power of the 
Mufti always balances that of the Sultan ; no one military edict, 
no sentence of death, can be promulgated by command of the 
Sultan without a religious J'etsa, or permission of the Mufti. 

Among the Romans, the power of the Tribunes was opposed 
to that of the Consuls : but as these two powers which repre- 
sented, the one that of the People, the other that of the No- 
blesse, had no Moderator to maintain the equilibrium between 
them, the State was incessantly agitated by their contentions. 
The Romans perceived so sensiblv, from the earliest periods of 
their Republic, the necessity of calling in a moderating power, 
--.critical situations thev created a Dictator. The Dicta- 


tor was a despot of a moment, who reduced every thing to ©y 
der. lie frequently saved the Republic when threatened only 
by foreign wars, but destroyed it when civil war broke out. In 
truth, it was possible to choose him only in one of the two 
contrary powers, and then they terminated in disturbing the 
equilibrium between them instead of re-establishing it. This 
was verified in the horrible proscriptions of Svlla and of Ma- 
rius. Sylla, at the head of the party of the Nobility, rendered 
himself omnipotent by the Dictatorship. Montesquieu cele- 
brates him for having abdicated it, as displaying a wonderful 
effort of courage : he represents him as confounded in the mul- 
titude ; like a simple individual whom any one citizen could 
call to account for the blood which he had shed. As the judg- 
ment of Montesquieu is of high authority, I must take the liber- 
ty to refute it, because it gives currency to a very gross mis- 
take. We cannot be too much on our guard against the pre- 
ponderancy of great names. Sylla did not abdicate his office 
from greatness of mind but from weakness, that he might not 
present in his own person a central point to the public vengeance. 
To whom could a Roman citizen have addressed himself to 
obtain justice of Sylla brought back to the level of a simple in- 
dividual ? Were not the Senate, the Consuls, the Tribunes, the 
Soldiery, the whole Magistracy of Rome the creatures of Syl- 
la, accomplices in his proscriptions, and interested in quashing 
all prosecution on that account ? What do I say ? Sylla, a simple 
individual, exercised his tyranny up to the very moment of his 
death ; and we are furnished with the proof of it in his history. 
" The day previous to that on which he died, being informed 
" that Granhts, who was in debt to the Public Treasury, defer- 
" red payment in expectation of his death, he sent for him, and 
" had him introduced into his chamber, where the moment he 
" entered, he gave orders to his ministers to seize him and to 
*' strangle him in his presence, but by the exertion of his voice 
" and the heat into which he threw himself, he burst the in- 
" ward imposthume which was preying on his life, and dis- 
u charged a great quantity of blood ; by which he was so ex- 
" hausted that after passing the nigftt in great agony, he expir- 
'• ed next morning." {Plutarch.) Who then would have dar- 
cd to call Svlla to an i exacted one so rigorously the 


last flay of his life ? Finally his credit was still so great, even 
nlu r his death, that the Roman ladies, to do honour to his fu- 
neral obsequies, expended sums far beyond what had ever been 
done before, or has been done since from respect to any one 
Roman. " Among other things," says Plutarch, " they con- 
" tributed such an enormous quantity of rich spicery and per- 
" fumes, that besides those which were carried in two hundred 
" and ten vessels, there was sufficient to form a large image re- 
" sembling Sylla himself, and another of a Lictor bearing the 
" fasces before him, consisting entirely of the most exquisite in- 
u cense and cinnamon." 

Thus the power of the People was oppressed by that of the 
Nobility, reinforced by Sylla with that of the Dictatorship. 
Hut when Cesar, invested likewise with the office of Dictator, 
threw himself into the scale of the People, then the party of the 
Nobility was oppressed in it's turn. At last, when the Empe- 
rors his successors, instead of being moderators of the Empire, 
had united in their own persons both the consular and tribuni- 
tial power, the Empire fell, because the two powers which ser- 
ved to balance each other, fixed at their centre, produced motion 
no longer. Thus it is that the functions of the human body are 
reduced to a paralytic state, when the blood, instead of circula- 
ting through the members, stagnates at the region of the heart. 

We fall therefore into a very great error, when Ave attempt, 
from the sentiment of our weakness, to give immoveable foun- 
dations to a government which is perpetually in motion. Na- 
ture derives constant harmonies only from moveable powers. 
The type of societies, like that of justice, may be represented 
by a balance, the use of which consists entirely in the counter- 
poise of it's two beams : the rest of bodies in motion is in their 

I conclude therefore that every Government is flourishing and 
durable, when it is formed of two powers which balance each 
other, when it has a head to act as Moderator, and has for it'.< 
centre the happiness of the People. These are, in my opinion, 
the only means and the only end which confer prosperity and 
duration on States, whether they be monarchical, aristocratic or 
republican : and this is demonstrated by the history of even 


Country in the World ; for it is not sufficient to produce instan- 
ces of certain brilliant periods of a Country, to justify political 
principles thrown out at random, as most writers have done ; 
it is necessary to see a whole State flourish and last a long time 
together, in order to form a judgment of the goodness of it's 
Constitution, as we judge of that of a man, not from some par- 
ticular exertion of strength, but from a sound and uniform state 
of health. 

There may be started as an objection the case of certain soci- 
eties of men, living according to the Laws of Nature, who have 
subsisted without those internal convulsions, and without a 
Chief, disposed to promote the happiness of their State, like 
bees to the labours of their hive, by the sentiment of their com- 
mon interest. But if their political counterpoises were not in 
their society, they were from without. I doubt whether even 
the bees, whose instinct is so sage, would take so much pains to 
amass provisions, to deposit them in the trunks of trees, to build 
their houses of wax, and to live together in unity, unless they 
had to contend with the winds, with the rain, the winter, and 
many other different enemies : external wars ensure their in- 
ternal concord. What is very remarkable, each swarm has a 
Moderator in their Queen. The same thing takes place in the 
habitations of ants, and I believe of all animals which live in 
Republics. Happy would it be for human societies, if they had 
to encounter in like manner only the obstacles presented by the 
hand of Nature ! Their enjoyments would extend over the face 
of the whole Earth, the productions of which they are destined 
to reap ; the human race would form but one family, whereof 
every individual would stand in need of no other Moderator but 
GOD and his own conscience. But in our badly constituted 
States, we find all valuable property of every kind accumulated 
on a small number of individuals ; thus, unable to demand them 
at the hand of Nature, we are obliged to dispute possession 
with men, and to direct our powers against ourselves. 

These principles being laid down, I find our French Govern- 
ment constituted like all those which, from their origin, have 
deviated from the Laws of Nature. It is divided into two 
cowers which serve as a mutual counterbalance. The one ron- 


usts of the Clerical Order and that of the Nobility, who have 
for several ages past united their interests ; the other, of the 
order of the People, who are beginning to acquire illumination 
respecting their own. But they are very far from being coun- 
terbalanced. Some of our Kings have indeed attempted to estab- 
lish the equilibrium, by throwing some weight into the scale of 
the People, from the erection of Communes, of Municipal Offi- 
ces, and of Parliaments ; but the members of these bodies having 
most of them a tendency toward the privileges of the Nobility, 
and the benefices of the Clergy, the interests of the People have 
remained without a defender. A few isolated writers alone, who, 
animated with zeal for those of Mankind, have been the only 
Representatives of the People, and have set up secret tribunes 
for them even in the conscience of the great. The King, how- 
ever, is as much interested as the People, in the maintenance of 
the political equilibrium, as he is the Moderator of it, and as 
one of the powers which ought to be balanced cannot exceed 
the other, without his finding himself deranged, and rendered 
incapable of putting any one in motion. 

Not only ought all the members of the political body to be in 
equilibrium for the interest of the People ; but to the People 
also, and to them alone, ought to be referred every particular 
interest. But the Clergy and Nobility are precisely the contra- 
ry of what they ought to be, and from what they originally have 
been ; for they are formed into a coalition of particular inte» 
rests entirely separated from the cause of the People. 

When the King, the Clergy and the Nobility of a State form 
one body with their People, they resemble the branches of a 
great tree which, notwithstanding the violence of the tempest, 
are restored to their equilibrium by the trunk which bears and 
unites them. But when these powers have centres different from 
the People, they are like those trees which grow by chance on 
tin summit of an old tower : they for some time decorate it's 
battlements ; but with the lapse of ages, their roots force a pas- 
between the layers of stones, separate their joinings, and 
terminate in the subversion of the monument which once sup- 
ported them. 

The King, the Clergy and the Nobility have a relation so ne- 


cessary with the People, that it is by means of it alone they have 
themselves common relations with each other. But for the Peo- 
ple they would be separated in interests as in functions. They 
resemble the branches of a tree which all have a tendency to di- 
verge, and which have no principle of union among themselv< a 
except the trunk which combines them. Though this compari- 
son may be very proper to render intelligible the popular inter- 
connexions to which I wish to lead our political powers, et as 
these mutual connexions have hitherto no existence among us, 
and as we must distinguish into corps which have separate cen- 
tres, the members of the same whole, I shall employ an image 
better adapted to represent the existing whole of our Estates- 
General, and to flatter the pretensions of the superior Orders. 
I consider then the King as the sun, the emblem of which is 
that of his illustrious ancestors ; the Clergy and Nobility as two 
planetary bodies revolving round the sun, and reflecting his 
light ; and the People as the obscure globe of the earth which 
we trample under our feet, but which nevertheless supports and 
feeds us. Let the powers of the Nation consider themselves 
therefore as powers of Heaven, which in some other respects 
they pretend to be ; but let them recollect at the same time, that 
notwithstanding the privileges which they enjoy of moving in 
their particular sphere, and of approaching that of the sun, they 
are not the less on that account adapted to the sphere of the 
People, seeing the sun himself, with all his splendour, exists in 
the Heavens only for the harmonies of the Earth and of the 
smallest plants on her surface. 

I shall put up prayers therefore for the harmony of the four 
Orders Avhich at this day compose the Nation, beginning with 
him who is the prime mover in it. 


MANY writez-s of high reputation consider the national 
power in a Monarchy, as divided into two ; into a legislative 
power and an executive power ; they assign the former to the 
Nation, and the latter to the King. 


This division appears to me defective, for it omits a third 
power essential to every good Government, the moderating 
power, which in Monarchy belongs exclusively to the Sovereign. 
Here the King is not the simple Commissioner of the Nation 
merely, a Doge or a Stadtholder ; he is a Monarch invested 
with the charge of directing the public operations. The Clergy, 
the Nobility, and even the People, only see and regulate each, 
one in particular, detached parts of the Monarchy, of which 
they are members only ; the King is the heart of it, and is alone 
capable of knowing and of putting in motion the combined 
whole. The three bodies of which Monarchy is composed are 
continually re-acting one against another, so that left to them- 
selves it would speedily come to pass that one of them must op- 
press the other two, or be oppressed by them, without it's be- 
ing possible for the King, who would have the executive power 
only, to do any thing else but become the agent of the strongest 
party, that is of oppression. The Sovereign must therefore have 
besides the moderating power, that is to say, the power of main- 
taining the equilibrium, not only between those bodies, but to 
unite their force externally in opposition to foreign powers, 
whose enterprizes he alone is in a condition to know. It is the 
moderating power which constitutes the Monarch. 

The writers to whom I alluded, have had a perception of the 
necessity of this power in the King, and have made it a ques- 
tion whether it ought to consist in a simple veto, as in England, 
or in a certain number of deliberate voices, to be reserved to 
him as his royal prerogative. 

The veto is an inert power capable of defeating the best con- 
certed projects. The King on the contrary ought to be vested 
with a power of activity capable of giving them energy and suc- 
cess. The heart, in the human frame, is never in a state of in- 
action : the same ought to be the case of the Sovereign in a 

As to deliberative voices to be reserved to the King, it is ex- 
tremely difficult to determine their number. I will take the 
liberty to suggest a few reflections on the subject. The num- 
ber of voices in the National Assembly is about twelve hundred, 
of which six hundred belong to the Clergy and Nobility, and 
: i\ hundred to the Commonalty. Now, if the six hundred votes 

Voi. III. Nn 


of the two first Orders were equal in weight to the six hundred 
of the Commons, as they are in number, there would be an ex- 
act equilibrium between them, and nothing more would be ne- 
cessary to the Sovereign but his own single voice to make the 
balance incline which way he pleased : What do I say ? The 
voice of the King which disposes of all employments, possesses 
of its own Nature such a preponderancy, that it alone would 
bear down all the rest, as happens in despotic States, unless it 
too had a counterbalance. 

It is useless therefore to multipty the voice of the King in the 
National Assembly, in order to give him weight ; it is sufficient 
that it be reserved to him : but it is highly necessary to reform 
the national balance itself, to render it susceptible of equilibrium. 
Though it's arms may be equal in length, it's scales are by no 
means so in respect of weight. It maybe affirmed that the scale 
of the Clergy and Nobility is of gold, whereas that of the Peo- 
ple is of straw. The former is so filled with mitres, ribands, 
dignities, governments, magistracies, survivancies already given 
away, though they originally belong to the Royal authority or 
even to the People, that the balance has always leaned to that 
side, in defiance of the efforts made by some of our Kings to 
re-adjust it. This scale accordingly preponderates not only by 
it's proper weight, but by that of the royal power, which it has 
attracted to itself ; so that in order to restore the scale of the 
People to an equilibrium, it would be necessary that the King 
should either render it heavier by transferring to it a certain 
proportion of dignities and employments, or by increasing the 
length ofit's arm, in multiplying the voices of the Representa- 
tives of the People in the National Assemblies. The plebeian 
lever thus becoming the longer of the two, it will require very 
little effort on the part of the Prince to give it inclination, and 
the moderating power will act in the Monarchy in the same 
manner as the moveable weight along the greater lever of the 
Roman balance. It was only by the number of their own voices 
that the People of Rome balanced the weight of the senatorial 
voices. In the British Parliament, the number of the members 
of the Upper House does not exceed two hundred and forty- 
five, whereas that of the members of the House of Commons 
amounts to five hundred and fifty-eight, that is to more than 


double. Without an equivalent proportion, the plebeian scale 
will never be able to acquire it's equilibrium, till the six hun- 
dred voices which compose it shall be supported by the voices 
of the twenty-four millions of men whom they represent : in 
that case, though it's scale may be light, it's arm becoming in- 
finitely long, it's re-action will be rendered infinitely powerful. 
This moment of revolution will be the proper one for the King 
to resume his moderating power, in order to the re-establish- 
ment of the monarchical balance. 

The royal influence will then resemble that of the Sun, who 
balances in the Heavens the Globes which revolve around him. 

I have oftener than once expressed a desire that the King 
would make a progress once every year over the estates of his 
Kingdom from one extremity to the other, as the Sun visits by 
turns every year the two poles of the world. My wishes seem 
to be on the point of accomplishment. The movement will in- 
deed be different, but the effect will be the same. It will not 
be the motion of the King toward the People j but that of the 
People toward their King. This political system is simplified 
like the astronomical, in which it is supposed, with a high de- 
gree of probability, that it is not the Sun which revolves round 
the Earth, but the Earth which revolves on her axis and in her 
orbit round the Sun, presenting to him by turns her icy poles. 

This order seems to me still better adapted to the functions 
of a King, who after all is only a man, and who ought not only 
to diffuse his light over his People, but who in his turn stands 
in need of receiving illumination fronff them. The King will 
accordingly derive information from the National Assembly, of 
what is passing in the provincial assemblies, of what is transact- 
ing in the assemblies of the cities ; and from those of the cities, 
of what is going on in the villages. 

The men like the affairs of the State will circulate under his 
; for the meanest peasant may be eligible as deputy from 
the assembly of his village to that of the city in whose district 
it is situated, from the assembly of such city to that of the pro- 
vince, and from that of the province to the National Assembly. 
Thus by this mode of rotation, the Deputies of the National As- 
bly may exhibit to the Sovereign all his subjects in succes- 


sion, just as the Earth presents to the Sun all the parts of hev 

I here proceed on the supposition that the assemblies of the 
villages, of the cities and of the provinces, shall take place all 
over the kingdom, that they shall be at once permanent and pe- 
riodical, in other words, that they shall be every year renovated 
in a third part of their members, and that the same rule shall be 
applied to the National Assembly, which ought to be the cen- 
tre of all those assemblies ; for there should exist complete har- 
mony in all the parts of the State. To grant permanency to 
the assemblies of villages, of cities and provinces, and to with- 
hold it from the National Assembly, would be the same thing 
as in a watch whose minute, middling and great wheels are all 
in motion, to withdraw the main spring. 

From this permanency of the National Assembly the result 
will be, that no one Aristocratical body will have it in it's power 
henceforward to interpose itself between the King and the Na- 
tion ; and that from the periodical rotation of it's members, it 
will not be possible for itself to degenerate into an aristocratic 
junto. As the King possesses of right the executive power, 
no law could pass in it but what had received the sanction of 
his authority; and as he has likewise the moderating power, 
this assembly being composed of two powers which have oppo- 
site interests, he will always possess the power of maintaining 
the equilibrium of it. Neither therefore by it's operations, nor 
by it's duration, would it be able to make any encroachment 
whatever on the Royal authority. 

It may be farther alleged, that it alone can facilitate the ope- 
rations of a good Government ; and by it alone the interests of 
the King and of the People, which are one and the same, can be 
found in perfect union. The King, in committing to the Depu- 
ties of the Commons the power of defending the interests of 
the People, commits to them at the same time that of defending 
the interests of royalty, which differ in nothing from the pros- 
perity of the People themselves, and should there happen, as 
in times past, any disorder in Administration, the People could 
not accuse the King of it, who has given them the perpetual 
power of watching it's motions, and of proposing to him the 
proper remedies. 


May this order so simple, so natural and so just, be admitted 
into all the Governments in the World, for the happiness of the 
Nations and of their Princes ! The tastes, the manners, the 
fashions, the discords and the wars of one kingdom communi- 
cate themselves to another : Wherefore might there not be a 
mutual intercommunication of concord and good Laws ? May 
Louis XVI. then receive for ever the applause which he shall 
merit for it from his own People ! May he obtain it from the 
gratitude of all Nations, and fulfil the glorious device transmit- 
ted to him from his ancestors, but which he alone shall have 
deserved to wear ; a Sun illuminating various Worlds, with 
this inscription : " Sufficient for many." Nee pluribus impar. 


IT were most devoutly to be wished that the Clergy had 
never separated their interests from those of the People. How- 
ever well endowed the Clergy of a State may be, the ruin of the 
People speedily involves theirs likewise. The example of the 
Greeks of Constantinople is a proof of this, whose Patriarchs 
intermeddled in the functions of the Emperors, and the Empe- 
rors in those of the Patriarchs. The People, drained by their 
Clergy and by their Princes, who have seized every species of 
property, even that of opinion, lost all sense of patriotism : 
What do I say ? During the siege which terminated in giving 
the Turks possession of Constantinople, this was the general 
cry, " We would rather see Turbans among us than a cardi- 
" mil's hat." I must here observe that the religion of a State 
is not always it's firmest support, as has been so frequently ad- 
vanced ; for the Greek Empire of Constantinople fell, and it's 
Religion remained. The same thing happened to the Kingdom 

erusalem. On the other hand, many religions have changed 
in different States, the Governments of which have continued 
to subsist : Such were the ancient* religions of several King- 

3 of Europe, of Asia and of Africa, to which have succeed- 
ed the Christian and Mahometan Religions, whereas many of 
not so much as changed a dynasty. The hap- 

a of the People is the only immovable basis of the happi- 


ness of Empires ; it is likewise that of the happiness of their 
Clergy. The Greek Clergy of Constantinople is reduced, un- 
der the Turks, to live on alms, in the very places where they 
once had the power, under their national Princes, to rear the 
superb Temples in which at this day the religion of an enemy 
triumphs. An ambitious Clergy impoverishes it's People, and 
an impoverished People sooner or later renders it's Clergy mi- 

Not only is tin? Clergyman united to the People by the bond 
of interest, but by that of duty. He is the national advocate of 
the miserable, and obliged to relieve them out of his own super- 
fluity. Most part of the property of the Church has been be- 
queathed expressly under those conditions. I could have wish- 
ed therefore that the superior Clergy had been at the head of their 
flocks to defend their interests, as in the ancient times of our Mo- 
narchy, during which the People themselves elected their own 
Pastors expressly for this purpose. But since those ancient forms 
so respectable in themselves have changed, even in a body of men 
so tenacious of their conservation, I wish at least that the Clergy 
would instil into the National Assembly the evangelical maxims 
which it is their business to announce in our Churches. I do not 
speak of the penny paid to Cesar by St. Peter, in obedience to 
Jesus Christ himself; for I will observe on this occasion., 
from the question put by Jesus to Peter, and his answer, that 
it was not customary among the Romans to exact tribute of ci- 
tizens but of strangers. It is clear indeed from History that 
the Roman People, so far from paying imposts, was frequently 
supported by largesses of corn, and the tribute of the conquer- 
ed Provinces. Among the Turks, the carach or tribute is paid 
only by the Greeks. This custom appears to me to have been 
generally prevalent over Asia. Jesus Christ seems to extend 
it to all the Kingdoms of the World, as founded on natural jus- 
tice. The question after all perhaps referred to personal, and 
not to territorial imposts. Be this as it may, seeing that from 
one abuse to another the n-nancial Government has with us 
succeeded to the feudal, it is now impossible to meet the exi- 
gences of the State without levying contributions on all it's 
members. The greatest part of our Clergy has sacrificed in 
this respect their ancient prerogatives in a very generous man 


ner : nevertheless the interest of truth obliges me to add, that 
they have likewise in this only done an act of justice, as.a great 
deal of property was formerly conferred on them by the State, 
as well as on the Nobility, to the burthening of even the mili- 
tary service. 

But the People at this day demands of them other contribu- 
tions, to a considerable extent, of property bequeathed to them 
by individuals, for the benefit of the still more sacred service, 
that of the miserable. In this undoubtedl)' must be compre- 
hended many of the rich Ecclesiastical Commendams, once 
destined to the relief of the leprous, and of wretches shut up 
in Hospitals. Let the Clergy then transfuse themselves into 
this Law of Nature, which is the basis, and the ultimate object 
of the Gospel ; of that Law which is the source of every virtue, 
of justice, charity, humanity, patriotism, concord, beneficence, 
politeness, and of every thing which renders man amiable, even 
in the eyes of the men of the World : " Do not to another what 
" you would not another should do unto you." Let them con- 
sider that this People, who in times past so liberally endowed 
them, is now sinking under a load of impositions ; that the 
vices against which they have been so long preaching are not 
infused into Man by Nature, but that they are the necessary 
results of our political Institutions ; that they spring out of the 
extreme opulence of a small number of citizens who have 
swallowed up every thing, and out of the absolute indigence of 
an inconceivable number of others who no longer possess any 
thing ; that on the one part, opulence produces voluptuousness, 
avarice, monopolies, ambition, which of themselves occasion so 
many woes to mankind ; and that on the other, poverty re- 
duces young women to the necessity of prostituting themselves, 
mothers to expose their own children, and that it generates se- 
dition, theft, quackery, superstition, and that innumerable mul- 
titude of miserable beings, who, stripped of every thing by the 
first, are reduced to the necessity of finding a livelihood at theii 

I could wish therefore that the Clergy would step forth tc 

the relief of the wretched, and fust of all make provision for 

necessities of the poor member 1 -, of their own body; thai 


there may not be a single Ecclesiastic destitute of the decent 
means of support. Not a simple village Vicar ought to be 
without the actual necessaries of life so long as his Bishop en- 
joyed a superfluity. It accordingly appears reasonable to me, 
that the National Assembly should employ the revenues of the 
rich Abbeys, founded of old by the Nation, in distributions, 
diffused over the whole Kingdom, by the provincial Assemblies, 
to the indigent of all countries, and of every communion, known 
and unknown, after the example of the good Samaritan ; for 
the charity of the Gospel should extend to men of every Reli- 
gion, and French hospitality to the men of all Nations. 

It is of essentiaKmportance that the Clergy should abolish in 
their own order those strange and shameful establishments, to- 
tally unknown to the Greeks, the Romans, and even to the Bar- 
barians ; I mean Convents, which in France are merely houses 
of confinement and correction. Those dolorous abodes, in which 
Monks undertake, for pay, the infliction of domestic and public 
\indictive punishment, are scattered in such numbers over the 
Kingdom, and have become so detestable as to tarnish the very 
names of the Saints whom they have presumed to adopt as pa- 
trons. In some of them are still to be seen cages of iron, the 
cruel invention of Louis XI. Most of them labour under a 
reputation so disgraceful, from the penances which they inflict, 
that a young man, or young woman, derives more infamy from 
having been an inmate, than from having been shut up in a com- 
mon prison. Hence Monks and Nuns refuse to blush at execut- 
ing the abominable functions of gaolers and executioners for the 
sake ol a paltry emolument. Is it not wonderfully strange that 
persons consecrated to GOD, who professionally preach up hu- 
manity, consolation, and the forgiveness of injuries, should have 
suffered themselves to be made the instruments of cruelty, of 
infamy and of vengeance, to acquire a little wealth ? and that 
on the other hand, the people should have seen the creation of 
such houses, more cruel and more degrading than the Bastille, 
without perceiving the manifest contradiction between the doc- 
trine and the practice of the persons who established them .' It 
belongs to the State, and not the Monks, to punish offenders 
against the State. 


I could farther wish that the Clergy, having contributed from 
their superfluity a supply for indigence, the source of so many 
private vices, would thunder their eloquence against ambition, 
that fertile source of public and private vice : that they would 
proscribe the first lessons of it in our schools, into which it has 
found admission under the name of emulation, and from infancy 
arms fellow-citizens against each other, by instilling into every 
child this pernicious maxim, " Be the first :" let the preachers 
of the Gospel inveigh vehemently, in the name of GOD, against 
the ambition of the Potentates of Europe, which results from 
the ambitious education they procure for their subjects, and 
which, after having brought an accumulation of misery on their 
own people, communicates that misery to the Human Race : let 
those sacred Ministers of Peace attack the sacrilegious Laws of 
War ; let themselves desist from the practice of decorating our 
Temples dedicated to Charity, with banners won by shedding 
the blood of Nations ; let them strenuously oppose the slavery 
of the Negroes, who are our brethren by the Laws of Nature 
and of Religion ; let them withhold their benediction from ves- 
sels employed in this infamous traffic, as well as from the stand- 
ards around which our sanguinary soldiers assemble ; let them 
refuse their ministrations to every one who contributes toward 
the increase of human wretchedness ; let them make the reply 
to the Powers who could engage them to consecrate the instru- 
ments of their politics, which the priestess Thcano made to the 
People of Athens when they tried to persuade her to pronounce 
a malediction upon, though convicted of having pro- 
faned the mysteries of Ceres: " I am a Priestess to offer up 
" prayers and implore blessings, not to execrate and devote to 
" destruction." 

Let our Priests then say to ambitious Potentates : " We are 
" not sent to excite men to the furies of war, but to concord, 
" love and peace ; not to pronounce a blessing on ships of war, 
" on vessels engaged in the Slave-trade, on regiments ; but, af- 
wt ter the example of the blessed Jesus, on little children, on 
" marriages and on harmless festivity." 

Thus the French Clergy, by taking a lively interest in the 
condition of suffering humanity, will render themselves dear to 
the men of all Nations. They will have the satisfaction of be- 

Voi.. III. O o 


holding their religious Empire revive in the hearts of the Peo- 
ple, as in the early ages when the Gospel was first preached, 
and when, speaking in the name of the GOD of Peace, they 
made tyrants tremble. 


MAY that Nobility, who in barbarous ages presented to the 
People models of heroism in times of war, and of urbanity in 
times of Peace, exhibit to them a pattern of ever)' patriotic vir- 
tue in an age of illumination ! It is my earnest wish that they 
should not only march, as heretofore, at the head of their war- 
riors, to defend them against external enemies, or to protect the 
weaker of them from the oppression of domestic foes, as in the 
days of ancient chivalry, but that, rising to the patrician great- 
ness of old Rome, they would adopt into their bosom the ple- 
beian families who may render themselves illustrious by virtue. 
Thus were the Catos and the Scipios adopted into noble families. 
May the}' farther, after the example of the Roman Nobility, 
ally themselves with the people by the bonds of marriage ! Au- 
gustus, in the zenith of his glory, gave his only daughter Julia 
in marriage to the plebeian Agrippa ; and Tiberius on the 
throne, married his grand-daughter Drusilla, and daughter of 
Germanicus, to Lucius Cassius, " of an ancient and honourable 
" plebeian extraction," to use the expression of Tacitus. Our 
own Kings themselves have often contracted similar marriages. 
Henry IV. who valued himself on being the first Gentleman in 
his kingdom, took to wife Mary de Medici.?, who descended 
from a family who were once merchants at Florence. The No- 
bility in our days, it is true, are coming nearer to the people by 
forming plebeian alliances, but if they were more frequent, and 
had not fortune merely for their object, we should not see so 
many females of noble birth languishing in a state of celibacy. 

Wherever the People is despised the Nobility is unhappy. It 
is the resentment of the People which fosters among the higher 
orders the spirit of civil war, and of duelling. Look at the eter- 
nal discords of the Polish Nobility : look at the ancient feuds of 
the Barons of England, before liberty had raised the people near- 


fcr to their level ; and at those of our own Princes and Dukes 
prior to Louis XIV. who by the exercise of his despotism reduc- 
ed all his subjects to nearly the same standard. 

Wherever the People is undervalued, the Nobility is of infe- 
rior consideration. Where the former is in a state of vassalage 
the latter sinks into a menial condition. Look at Poland, where 
the lackeys and domestics of the meanest station in great houses 
are of the Order of Nobility. What Frenchman of noble birth 
would not at this day prefer the service of the People in our 
Monarchical Government, to the service of a grandee, as in the 
time of the feudal despotism ? Who would not a thousand times 
rather be a Peer of Great Britain, living with his farmers, and 
balancing in the House of Lords, or even in that of Commons, 
the interests of his Country and the destiny of the Globe, than 
an Indian Nair, whom one of the commonalty dares not so much 
as touch, under pain of death, but who is himself obliged to sa- 
crifice his conscience and his life to the caprices of the despot 
who keeps him in pay ? 

O ye Nobles, would you wish to exalt your own order, raise 
the order of the People ! It was the greatness of the Roman 
people which constituted the Majesty of the Roman Senate. 
The higher a pedestal is, the loftier is the column reared upon 
it ; the closer the union between the column and it's pedestal, 
the greater is it's solidity. 

It is very remarkable that the Romans conferred the most il- 
lustrious marks of distinction only on those of their citizens who 
had merited well of the People. " The Civic Crown," says 
Pl'my, " was deemed more honourable, and communicated 
M higher privileges than the Mural, the Obsidional and Naval 
" Crowns, because there is more glory in saving a single citi- 
" zen than in storming cities and gaining battles." 

Those marks of distinction, kept in reserve for the servants 
of die people alone, were, in the times of the Republic, the real 
causes of the grandeur of the Roman Senate, because a people is 
to be served by virtues alone, but they became the causes of her 
decline, when, under the Emperors, they were Ix slowed on 
ihose only who had deserved well of the Court, because C 
liers are to be seised onlv bv \ i< 


As we live in an age in which the members of the political 
body are still sound parts, under a chief resembling Marcus 
Aurelius, I feel myself drawn into a train of wishing that we 
might in some measure acquire a resemblance to the ancient 
Romans. I could wish then, in order to unite the Nobility 
with the People, and the People with the Nobility, that an or- 
der of Chivalry might be instituted, in imitation of the Civic 
Crown. This order should be conferred on every citizen who 
might have deserved well of the People, be the service of what- 
ever nature it may. It should communicate honourable privi- 
leges, such as the rights of sitting in the Assemblies of the Vil- 
lages, of the Cities, of the Provinces, and even in the National 
Assembly. The persons raised to this distinction should, on 
certain days of the year, have the privilege of admission to the 
King's presence, and at all seasons to his Majesty's Ministers, 
with the right of presenting requests for all men who by their 
virtues had rendered themselves worthy of the attention of Go- 
vernment. The badge of the order might be a crown of oak 
embroidered on the breast, with this motto : For the People. 
The National Assembly alone should have the power of pre- 
senting to the Sovereign, citizens whom they reckoned worthy 
of this distinction, and it should be granted and conferred only 
by his Majesty himself in person. 

This order of the People should be personal Nobility to men 
not noble by birth ; for in future there ought to be no hereditary 
ennoblement, the experience of all ages and of all countries hav- 
ing assured us that virtue and vice are not transmissive through 

With respect to persons originally noble, they would preserve 
for their posterity the ancient prerogatives of rank : but they 
would acquire, by means of this new distinctive order, the pow- 
er of adopting a plebeian decorated with it; and in this case only 
nobility should become hereditary in the person adopted. Thus 
the Nobility would be rendered dear to the People, from find- 
ing in them the only means of giving perpetuity to their own ele- 
vation ; and the People would become dear to the Nobility from 
finding in them the means of illustrating and supporting great 
s threatened with extinction. If to these are added alii- 


auces contracted by marriage, our patricians and plebeians would 
ieel an approximation, not produced by bonds of silver and 
gold, but by those of Nature and Virtue. Such are the wishes 
I form, that People may rise toward the Nobility without pride, 
and that the Nobility may descend toward the People without 
suffering degradation. 

On the other hand, as this very Nobility has relatives innu- 
merable whom poverty confounds with the lowest classes of the 
People, as I have frequently seen in our Provinces, particularh 
in Brittany, it is necessary to provide the means of subsistence 
for them. I am persuaded that in this view was dictated a few 
years ago that article of the ordinance of the Military Depart- 
ment which reserves to Men of Family, exclusively the rank of 
Officers in the army. But Gentlemen born and brought up in 
the bosom of indigence, are never capable of discharging the 
functions of an Officer ; for this rank requires with us, especially 
in these times, an education and a degree of intelligence not to 
be attained without the advantage of fortune. 

I recollect my having seen one day in Lower Normandy a 
poor man of birth who earned his livelihood by making lions of 
clay. Those lions, to say the truth, had no great resemblance to 
lions ; but they at least indicated a noble sentiment in the manu- 
facturer, which poverty had not been able to extinguish. Nav. 
this sentiment propagated itself extensively through the medium 
of the manufacture. When a Country Gentleman a little at his 
ease had placed a pair of those lions on two pilasters of earth 
and flint on the right and left of his avenue, he could, in imita- 
tion of Princes, call his Court-yard a Court of Honouz'. 

I love to sec a man, and particularly a man of family, fin', 
himself resources against the injustice of fortune, and like a fir 
on a rock maintain an erect position in spite of the bufferings of 
the tempest. 

An art, however insignificant, is in a state of opulence a re- 
fuge from the tyranny of the passions and from languor ; but in 
a state of indigence it is a resource against want. Religion 
among the Turks imposes it as a duty, even on the Sultans, to 
learn a trade, and to practise it. I know well that it is not in- 
consistent with the character of a Gentleman to practise a liberal 
art, but why not a mechanical one ? A liberal art mini 


chiefly to luxury, and requires talents which are the progeny ol 
the passions ; a mechanical art is necessary to the demands of 
human life, and calls only for the exercise of patience, the inse- 
parable companion of virtue. A man of birth it is true may 
with us manufacture glass without discredit to his rank ; but 
why not pottery ? This, as far as I can judge, is the reason : as 
we have been long accustomed to respect fortune only, we have 
ennobled every condition that leads to it or which is subservient 
only to luxury : now as glass was originally very scarce, it was 
Mn enjoyment confined entirely to the rich : a Gentleman might 
therefore consistently be a dealer in glass. For the same rea- 
son likewise it is competent for him to have a share in the East- 
India Company, to be a Farmer-general, an Opera Performer, 
as if a Gentleman in wooden shoes could attain those brilliant 
situations ! He is at liberty I grant to place his children in the 
military school ; but that institution of Louis XV. destined ex- 
clusively to the relief of decayed Nobility, is now hardly a re- 
source for persons of this description, because it is frequently 
intercepted by the rich families of their own order, or even of 
the commonalty, and is besides insufficient. 

It seems to me then necessary to permit to poor men of birth 
the exercise of all professions whatever ; for if Nobility con- 
sists in a man's being useful to his Country, every profession, 
especially the most ordinary, promotes this object. A man 
cannot suffer degradation by practising an art, or carrying on a 
trade, but by vice only. Every age has produced characters 
rendered illustrious by patriotic virtues from all conditions of 
life. Agathocles, the conqueror of Sicily, was the son of a pot- 
ter ; the Chancellor Olivier^ of a Physician ; the Mareschal Fa- 
ber, of a Bookseller ; Franklin., the asserter of American liber- 
ty, of a Printer, and himself a Printer. Christopher Columbus, 
before embarking on the discovery of the new World, earned his 
bread by constructing geographical charts. There is no con- 
dition so mean as to be incapable of producing a great man. 

By permitting the Nobility without derogating from their 
dignity, to exercise all the arts of peace, a Kingdom will not 
be suffered to fall into a lethargy through the idleness of it's 
Nobles, when they are rich, as is the case at this day in Spain, 
Portugal and Italy ; nor into violent convulsions from their mi- 


litary spirit, when they are poor, as formerly was the case with 
ourselves as well as with most of the Nations of Europe. 

Historians never discern any thing but the results of our cala- 
mities, because they ascribe them solely to political causes ; the 
moral causes which occasion them always escape their atten- 
tion : because, concerned only in the fortune of Kings, the in- 
terests of mankind are a matter of indifference to them. They 
impute the perpetual Wars which ravage Europe to the ambi- 
tion of it's Princes, and they are in the right ; but it is of high 
importance to remark that the ambition of Princes, and the 
Wars both foreign and domestic which are the effects of it, ori- 
ginate, in every state, in the ambition of the Nobility, who being 
many in number, and having no other means of subsistence but 
the military profession, instigate their Sovereigns to War and 
Conquest, for the sake of getting to themselves commissions, 
pensions and governments. The opinion of Kings is formed 
entirely on the opinions of their Courtiers. Thus in countries 
where the Cfergy is numerous and poor, there have arisen, from 
the spirit of controversy, spiritual Wars without end, equally 
ruinous to the Nations, but which procured for the persons who 
fomented and maintained them, doctors' square-caps, benefices, 
bishoprics and cardinals' hats. In our days, when the Poten- 
tates of Europe, illumined to the discernment of their pecuni- 
ary interests, direct their ambition toward commerce, it is not 
the Clergy or Nobility who involve us in National quarrels, but 
commercial associations. How many wars have been kindled 
and propagated to the extremities of the earth, by the European 
trading Companies, the East-India, the Assiento, the Molucca, 
the Philippine, the Guinea, the Senegal, the South-Sea, the 
Hudson's-bay, &c. The last War which embroiled England, 
France, Spain, Portugal, Holland, the Cape of Good Hope, the 
East Indies, the two Americas, and which terminated in the 
ruin of our finances, and bears hard to this day upon the Estates- 
General of the kingdom, originated in the English India-Com- 
pany, who wanted to extort a tax upon tea from the inhabitants 
of Boston. Thus the late storms which desolated the whole 
Globe, issued from a tea-warehouse. 

What renders us Europeans so fickle and inconstant is the 
formation of associations, whose ambition blends itself with 


that of our education. By the selfishness of corps Countnc 
are ruined by referring Country exclusively to themselves, and 
by depriving the People of their natural relations. That which 
stifles the Sciences in any Countiy is the interposition of com- 
panies of Doctors between the People and light, as has hap- 
pened in Spain, in Italy, and among ourselves. That which ru- 
ins Agriculture and Commerce is the intervention of monopo- 
lizing companies between the People and the crops or the ma- 
nufactures. What destroys the Finances is the intervention of 
companies of Stock-jobbers between the People and the Public 
Treasury. What ruins a Monarchy is a corps of Nobility in- 
terposing between a People and their Prince, as in Poland. 
What ruins a Religion is a corps of Priests thrusting them- 
selves between the People and God, as among the Greeks of 
the Lower Empire and elsewhere. Finally, that which in- 
volves the Human race in destruction, is when a Country it- 
self intolerant, like the corps which compose it, interposes be- 
tween other Countries, and attempts to appropriate to itself ex- 
clusively the Science, the Commerce, the Power and the Reason 
of the whole Universe. 

It is absolutely necessary therefore to unite with the interests 
of the People the interests of Associations which ought to be 
only members of it, as they involve general ruin when they 
pursue separate interests, and instead of being public vehicles 
transform themselves into barriers. It is no less necessary to 
reform the Public Education, as corps entirely owe their am- 
bitious spirit to the European mode of Education, which says 
to every man from infancy upward : " Be the first ; n and to every 
corps : " Be master." 

The means of acquiring distinction and Nobility being hence- 
forward reserved for such citizens only as shall have deserved 
well of the People, the Noblesse and the People will feel them- 
selves united by the bonds of mutual benevolence, which ought 
to bring all men into contact, those especially of the same Na- 

Menenius Agrippa reconciled the Roman People and their 

Senate by the allegory of the members which fell into decay by 

refusing to labour for the stomach : but what would he have 

if the Roman Senate had itself formed a separation from 


the People, and refused to have any thing in common with 
them ? In his ingenious apologue, the Senate which governed 
the Empire might be compared to the precordial parts of the 
human body ; but with us the authority being monarchical, the 
Nobility can in many respects be considered only as the armed 
hands of the Nation. The people, from whose bosom issues 
the soldier)', share this service with them, and by their labours, 
their art and industry, ought to consider themselves besides as 
the working hands of the body politic ; they are likewise it's 
eyes, the voice and the head, because from them proceed the 
greatest part of the men of letters, of the orators and philoso- 
phers who illuminate as well as of the magistrates who govern 
it ; in a word, they constitute the body properly so called, as 
other bodies owe their existence wholly to it, exist not them- 
selves but for it, and are, relatively to it, only what the mem- 
bers are relatively to the human body. In our monarchical 
state it is not the Nobility which is to be compared to the heart 
and the stomach of the body politic, it is Royalty which pos- 
sesses this station. The judicious La Fontaine was abundantly 
sensible of this, in applying to us the apologue of Menenius. 
This is the manner in which he depicts the Royal function and 
those of the People, in his Fable of the Belly and the Mem- 

" With Royalty my work should have commenced ; taken in 
" a certain point of view it is typified by Monsieur Gaster :* if 
" he feels any want the whole body has a fellow-feeling. The 
" members however growing tired of labouring for his benefit, 
" resolved every one to live like a gentleman, that is in idleness, 
" pleading the example of Gaster himself. But for us, said 
" they, he must live on air : we sweat, we toil like beasts of 
" burden ; and for whom ? for him only, without any profit to 
" ourselves. The end of all our exertions is forsooth to find 
" him a dinner. Let us make holiday, it is a lesson which he 
" himself has taught us. No sooner said than done : the hands 
" and arms cease from their functions ; the legs and feet refuse 
" to stir ; with one voice they told Mr. Gasler he might look 

* The Creek word signifying belly. The adjective gastric is derived from 
.1 ; gastric moisture, that is nutritious. 

Vol. III. P v 


" out for himself. Of this error however they had speedilv 
u cause to repent ; the poor creatures fell into a state of lan» 
" guor : no new blood now circulated round the heart ; every 
" member suffered, and lost all strength. The mutineers be- 
" came sensible that he whom they had accused of idleness, 
" contributed more to the general welfare than any one of them. 
" This fiction is applicable to the Royal dignity. It receives 
" and gives, and the benefit is mutual. For it every one la- 
" bours, and every one in return derives aliment from it. The 
>' artisan by it draws subsistence from the sweat of his brow ; 
" it enriches the merchant, supports the magistrate, maintains 
" the husbandman, pays the soldier, diffuses it's sovereign be- 
" neficence in a thousand different channels, and alone preserves 
" the whole State in health and vigour. It was a happy inven- 
" tion of Menenius. The Commonalty was on the point of 
" coming to a rupture with the Senate ; the malcontents alleged 
" that the Patricians had engrossed the whole power of the em- 
" pire, it's treasures, honours, dignities, while the whole bur- 
" den lay on their shoulders, tributes, taxes, the fatigues and 
" dangers of war. The people had already deserted the city, 
" disposed to go in quest of another country, when Menenius 
a unfolded to them their mistake by the fable of the Belly and 
" Members, and thereby brought them back to their duty." 

I who possess not La Fontaine *s talent of putting into simple 
and charming verses the profound lessons of politics, shall con- 
tent myself with presenting in plain prose an Indian Fable, bet- 
ter adapted still than the Roman ilpologue to exhibit the rela- 
tions which our Nobility and even our Clergy have with the 




The palm, loftiest of fruit trees, formerly bare, like other 
trees, it's fruit on it's boughs. One day the branches, proud of 
their elevation and of their riches, said to their trunk : " Our 
" fruits are the delight of the desert, and our ever verdant foli- 
" age the glory of it. It is by us that caravans in the plains, 
'' and ships along the shores regulate their courses. We rise 
(i to such a height that the Sun illuminates us before the dawn- 


" ing of Aurora, and after he is sunk in the ocean. We are the 
" daughters of Heaven ; by day we are fed with it's light, and 
" by night with it's refreshing dews. As for you, dark child 
" of earth, you drink of waters under the earth, and breathe un- 
u der the shade which we supply ; your foot is for ever con- 
" cealed in the sand ; your stem is clothed with a coarse bark 
" only, and if your head can pretend to any honour it is that of 
" bearing us aloft." The trunk replied : " Ungrateful daugh- 
" ters, it is I who gave you birth, and it is from the bosom of 
" the sands that my sap nourishes you, generates your fruits to 
" re-produce them, and exalts you to the Heavens to preserve 
" them ; it is my strength which supports at that height your 
*' weakness against the fury of the winds." Scarcely had he 
spoken, when a hurricane issuing from the Indian Ocean spread 
devastation over the country. The palm-branches are tossed 
down to the ground, are tossed upward again, are dashed against 
each other, and stripped by the noisy tempest of their fruits. 
The trunk meanwhile maintains it's ground ; mot one of it's 
roots but what attracts and sustains from the bosom of the earth, 
the branches agitated in the higher region of the air. Tran- 
quillity being restored, the branches reduced to a fruitless foli- 
age, offered to their trunk to place their fruits henceforth as a 
common deposit on his head,, and to preserve them to their ut- 
most by covering them with their leaves. To this the palm-tree 
consented, and ever since this agreement, the stately plant bears 
aloft on it's stem it's long rows of fruit up to the regions of the 
winds, without fearing the violence of the storm : it's trunk is 
become the symbol of strength, and it's branches that of glory 
and virtue. 

The palm-tree is the State ; it's trunk and fruits are the Peo- 
ple and their productive labours ; the hurricanes are it's ene- 
mies ; the palm-braches of the State are the Nairsand the Bra- 
mins, when transformed into the friends of the People. 



THE term Tiers-Etat (Third Estate) is a very strange one, 
the appellation given in France to the People, that is to more 
than twenty millions of men, by the Clergy and Nobility, who 
taken together do not constitute at most the fortieth part of the 
Nation. I do not believe that such a denomination exists in 
any other country of the world. What would the Roman peo- 
ple have said, a Nation divided like ours into three orders un- 
der the Emperors, had their Senators and Knights presumed to 
give them the name of Tiers-Etat ? What would the People of 
England say if such a definition were given of them by the 
Lords Spiritual and Temporal of the Upper House of Parlia- 
ment ? Is the French People less respectable in the eyes of the 
orders which they support as the means of promoting national 
prosperity and glory ? 

In every country the People is all in all : but if it is consider- 
ed as an isolated body, relatively to the other bodies which in 
conjunction with it constitute the State, it is, as has been de- 
monstrated, the first in point of antiquity, of utility, in number 
and power, as the power of the other bodies emanates from 
them, and exists only for them. 

It seems to me reasonable therefore that the body of the Peo- 
ple should preserve it's proper name, as the bodies of the Cler- 
gy and Nobility have done, and that it should be denominated 
the order of the People. In place of the name of Tiers-Etat 
might be substituted if you will that of Commons, as is the case 
in England, and which has frequently been adopted among our- 
selves. This term commons characterizes in particular the peo- 
ple of every Province of the Kingdom, in all ages denomi- 
nated by the appellation of the communes of Dauphine, of Brit- 
tany, of Normandy, Sec. who united form the communes of the 
Kingdom. This name of Commons has never been given to any 
but the People, as might be proved by the authority of Writers 
who best understood the meaning of expressions, especially that 
of La Fontaine. In truth, the interests of the People are com- 
mon not only to each Province, but to the other orders of the 


Nation, because their felicity constitutes the general felicity. 
This does not hold good as to the interests of the other orders, 
which are peculiar to themselves. On the other hand, the name 
of Tiers-Etat given to the People, supposes, as J. J. Rousseau 
has very well remarked, that it's interest is only the third, though 
it be in it's own nature the first. Now as men form at the long- 
run their ideas, not on things, but on words, justice demands 
that the surname, of Tiers-Etat, imposed on the People for some 
ages past by the privileged bodies, because it reminded them of 
their privileges, should be replaced by that of the commons, 
which it has at all times enjoyed, that it may remind all of the 
common interest. Salus populi suprema lex esto : Let the safe- 
ty of the People be the supreme Law. 

Well-meaning patriots, commiserating the wretched condition 
of the country people, have proposed to form them into a body 
different from those of the cities ; but this must be guarded a- 
gainst with extreme caution. Division into corps involves di- 
vision of interests. The peasantry ought to be sulficiently re- 
presented in the Provincial Assemblies, and in the National As- 
sembly ; their demands ought in these to have a preferable con- 
sideration : but it appears to me extremely dangerous to make 
any distinction in the Assemblies between the commons of the 
Country and those of the Cities, for their interests are insepara- 
ble. The commerce of the Cities can prosper only by the la- 
bours of agriculture, and the labours of agriculture only by the 
commerce of the Cities. 

The power of a Nation depends entirely on the union of it's 
parts. The higher branches of a tree may diverge, but not the 
fibres of it's trunk, which ought to be compacted under the same 
bark. Were it possible to divide the trunk of a tree into branch- 
es, an oak would be reduced to a bush ; but were all the branch- 
es of a bush compacted into a single trunk, of a bush you might 
form an oak. This presents a very lively image of what has ac- 
tually taken place in several States. How many Kingdoms have 
been reduced to bushes in a vast extent of territory, because 
their trunk ramified only into Nobles and Priests ! Look at 
Spain and Italy. How many Monarchies and Republics have 
risen into oaks, cedars and palm-trees in small territories, be- 
cause the Nobility and Clergy are conglomerated into one mass 


with the People, and have but one common interest with them ! 
Look at England and Holland. Call to remembrance the force 
of the Roman Empire, in which the Nobles knew no glory but 
that of the People. 

The power of a Nation, I repeat it, depends entirely on the 
union of it's parts. The miseries of our own People have ari- 
sen from this, that the Clergy and Nobility have among us 
formed two orders separated from their interests; those mise- 
ries never began to diminish till despotism, manners, and above 
all philosophy, brought them to a state of approximation. It is 
no less true that counter-balancing powers are as necessary to 
the harmony of a State as they are to that of Europe, but there 
will ever be but too many interests to divide men in the same 
Society, were there no other but those of fortune. The corps 
of the Nobility and Clergy in our political order, ought to be 
the reverse of what they are : instead of uniting together against 
the People, they ought to struggle against each other in favour 
of the popular interest, as the Nations of Europe contend for 
the freedom of their commerce, of their navigation, of their 
fisheries, or for any other pretext which may interest the natu- 
ral rights of mankind : it is this right which they incessantly in- 
voke. The commons of France ought to govern themselves, at 
least as to form, by the same laws which regulate the communi 
ty of the Human Race. 

In pointing out the means of bringing the Clergy and Nobi- 
lity into contact with the People, I have likewise indicated those 
of drawing the People closer to these two orders, not by the 
sentiment of ambition, which is calculated only to separate the 
members of a State, but that of virtue which unites them. Our 
people have a propensity but too powerful to rise ; education 
and example are continually pushing them upward. They 
ought to be invited neither to mount nor to descend, but to 
keep in their place: it suits them neither to be a tyrant nor a 
r4ave ; let it suffice them to be free. Virtue in every case keep 
the middle station j there likewise is to be found security, tran- 
quillity, happiness. I could wish therefore that no Burgher 
should ever desire to get out of the order of the People ; but 
-hould he feel the restless stimulus of glory, let him still remain 


in his station ; for there is no condition of life but what presents 
a career capable of gratifying even the most unbounded am- 

O Plebeian, who discernest no glory comparable to that 
which high birth bestows, and who blushest at being a man be- 
cause thou art not noble, Art thou a lawyer? Be the defender oi 
virtue and the terror of the guilty. Like another Dupaty, res- 
cue from our barbarous codes their innocent victims ; declare 
war against our Verreses and our Catilincs ; undertake and plead 
the cause of Nations ; consider how Cicero with the thunders 
of eloquence, protected Kings, and Demosthenes made them 
tremble. Art thou but a simple tradesman ? It is commerce 
which vivifies Empires ; to Commerce the two wealthiest States 
of Europe, England and Holland, are indebted for their power ; 
it is by means of Commerce that their Merchants behold in 
their pay, not only Gentlemen innumerable, but Princes and 
Sovereigns. Commerce exalts even to the Throne. Call to 
mind those ancient traders of Florence who have swayed the 
sceptre in their own Country, and given two Queens to your'*. 
Art thou only a wretched mariner, wandering like Ulysses 
from sea to sea, far remote from thy native shores ? Thou art 
the agent of nations : thou providest not only a supply for their 
necessities, but communicatest to them what is most precious 
among mankind, next to virtue, Arts, Sciences, Knowledge. By 
men of your condition it was that islands were made known to 
islands, nations to nations, and the two worlds to each other : but 
for them the Globe, with it's rarest productions, would be un- 
known to us. Reflect on the glory of Christopher Columbus, to 
which no glory, even that of Royalty, is once to be compared, 
as he alone, by the discovery of America, has effected a change- 
in the wants, the enjoyments, the empires, the religions, and 
the destiny of the greatest part of the inhabitants of the globe. 
Art thou, on the contrary, an artist continually sedentary, as 
Theseus in the regions below? O how many paths are open to 
thee, from the bosom of repose, that lead to a glory sullied by 
no guilt ! How many of these are presented to you in painting, 
sculpture, engraving, music, the productions of which transport 
with admiration and delight? Nay how many artists are there, 
whose names shall be renowned to all generations, though their 


works no longer exist ; so eager are men to pursue the celestial 
traces of their genius, and to pick up the minutest particles of 
gold which the brilliant current of their reputation rolls down 
the tide of ages ! Is there a Nobleman in all Europe whose 
name is to endure, and to be celebrated, like those of the Phi- 
diases and the Apelleses, who have for two thousand years en- 
joyed the homage of posterity, and who reckoned the Alexan- 
ders of their day in the number of their courtiers ? Art thou a 
philosopher simply, to whom no one pays court ? Consider that 
you in your turn pay court to no one. The Nobility depend on 
Kings, the Philosopher holds of GOD only : the Nobility live as 
Gentlemen, thou livest as a Man, which is far more dignified. 
But for Philosophers, the Nations, misled by vain illusions, 
would know neither the laws nor the combinations of Nature. 
They are the original sources of the Arts, the Commerce and 
the Wealth of Nations. Call to remembrance the wonderful 
discoveries of Galileo, who first found out the gravity of the 
Air, and demonstrated the motion of the Earth round the Sun ; 
and that multitude of illustrious men who have enlarged the 
sphere of the human mind, in Astronomy, Chemistry, Botany, 
Sec. They are the most memorable epochs of ages, and their 
glory will last as long as that of Nature, whose children they 
are. Art thou a man of letters ? The distribution of glory to 
other men is in thy hands. Illustrious Authors ! Like the Ve- 
nus of Lucretius, without you nothing agreeable is produced in 
the sphere of intelligence, and nothing is permanent in the fields 
of memory. Whether your attention is directed to Poetry, to 
Philosophy, or to History, you are the firmest supports of 
Virtue. By your means Nations unite themselves in bonds of 
interest and of friendship, from one extremity of the Earth to 
the other, and ages past with ages yet to come. But for you, 
kings and the tribes which they governed would pass away with- 
out leaving a trace of their existence. Whatever is renowned 
among men owes to you it's celebrity, and your own names sur- 
pass in splendour the names of those whom you have rendered 
illustrious. What glory ever equalled that of Homer, whose 
poesy served to regulate the ancient Republics of Greece, and 
whose genius, after a lapse of twenty-six centuries, still conti- 


nues to preside among us over Literature, over the fine Arts, 
over Theatres and over Academies. 

Art thou, after all, but an obscure peasant doomed to the cul- 
ture of the ground ? O ! reflect that thou exercisest the most 
noble, the most lovely, the most necessary, the most sacred of 
all Arts, seeing it is the Art of GOD himself. But if that poi- 
son of glory, instilled from infancy into all conditions of men 
among us by the principle of emulation, is fermenting in thy 
veins ; if the vain applause of men is necessary to thee, in the 
midst of thy peaceful orchards ; meditate on the endless suc- 
cession of woes which follow in the train of glory, the envy of 
the little, the jealousy of equals, the perfidy of the great, the in- 
tolerance of corps, the neglect and indifference of Kings. Me- 
ditate on the fate of those men whom I have produced as 
instances of persons who have merited the best of their country 
and of posterity ; on the head of Cicero, cut off by his own client 
Popinius Lena, and nailed to that very pulpit which he had dig- 
nified by his eloquence ; on Demosthenes, pursued by order of the 
Athenians whom he had defended against Philip, as far as the 
temple of Neptune in the island of Calauria, and hastening to 
swallow poison, to find in death a refuge more certain than al- 
tars could afford. Think on the poniard which stabbed to death 
one of the Medicis in that very City which they had loaded with 
benefits ; on the irons which bound Christopher Columbus on re- 
turning from his second voyage to the New World, and which 
in his dying moments he ordered to be put into the tomb with 
him as a monument of the ingratitude of the Princes to whom 
he had rendered a service so magnificent ; on Galileo in the pri- 
sons of the inquisition, obliged to retract on his knees the sub- 
lime truth which he had demonstrated ; on Homer, blind and a 
mendicant, singing from door to door his sublime Poems, among 
those very Greeks who were one day to trace up to them the 
origin of their Laws, and of their most illustrious Repubucs. 
Look at Poussin in his country, France, crowned with glory all 
over Europe, his own country excepted, forced to seek in a fo- 
reign land consideration and bread ; at Descartes a fugitive in 
Sweden, after having illumined his Country with the first 
rays of Philosophy ; at Fenelon exiled into his Diocese, for ha- 
ving loved GOD more than his Ministers, and Nations more 

Vol. III. Qq 


than Kings. In a word, represent to thyself that innumerable 
multitude of illustrious and unfortunate men who, torn in secret 
by the very calumnies of their own professed friends, languished 
in poverty and contempt, and without having so much as the 
consolation to be pitied, had the mortification of beholding the 
honours and rewards due to themselves bestowed on most un- 
worthy rivals. Then thou wilt bless thy obscurity which per- 
mitteth thee at last to reap the fruit of thy labours with the 
esteem of the vicinity ; to rear a guiltless offspring under the 
shade of thy orchards, and to attain, in a life so tempestuous, the 
only portion of happiness which Nature has allotted to Man. 
While the storm breaks in pieces the cedar on the summit of 
the mountain, the herbage escapes the fury of the winds, and 
flourishes in peace at the bottom of the valley. 


THE Nation is formed of the harmony of the three Orders, 
of the Clergy, of the Nobility and of the People, under the in- 
fluence of the King, who is the Moderator of it. The depu- 
ties of these three orders are now met in the National Assem- 
bly, in the proportion nearly of 300 for the Clergy, of 300 for 
the Nobility, and of 600 for the People. 

As the two first Orders have for several ages united their in- 
terests, they may be considered as forming a single body which 
balances that of the People : from this therefore result two 
powers which re-act against each other, and whose counterpoise 
is necessary, as has been said, to the harmony of every modern 
Government. The King then is enabled to hold the monarchi- 
cal balance in equilibrium, by casting his power into the popular 
scale, in case the Clergy and Nobility should discover a tenden- 
cy toward Aristocracy ; or into that of the two first Orders, 
should the People incline toward Democracy. On this hypo- 
thesis, I have compared the State to a Roman balance ; the two 
powers, to two levers of unequal magnitude ; and Royalty to 
the moveable weight on the longer lever, for the purpose of as- 
certaining the quantity weighed. 


We have considered the People, from superiority in point of 
number, as representing the longer arm of the balance, and the 
Clergy with the Nobility the shorter ; but this small arm pos- 
sesses a weight so powerful, that the effect of the greater is re- 
duced to nothing, unless the King press on that side. On the 
side of the Clergy and Nobility are the ecclesiastical and mili- 
tary dignities and benefices, the better part of the lands of the 
kingdom, the disposal of all employments, and even the influence 
of Parliaments, those ancient fathers of the people, as well as 
the inclinations of multitudes of plebeians, who aspire after ap- 
proximation to the first by the acquisition of Nobility, or who 
suffer themselves to be enthralled by the hope of protection, and 
by the respect simply which high birth commands. 

If the power of the People, whose number is at least forty 
times as considerable as that of the Clergy and Nobility, has 
been diminishing from age to age, so as to lose all it's preroga- 
tives, and it's equilibrium against their united power, I con- 
clude that the Deputies of the People are not sufficiently nume- 
rous in the National Assembly, in which they are only equal in 
number to those of the other Orders. 

It is indeed computed that in the body of the Clergy, the pa- 
rochial incumbents will incline towards the Deputies of the Com- 
mons, from the ties of blood ; but will they not rather be dis- 
posed to incline toward their Bishops, from the ties of inter- 
est ? Does not the spirit of corps generally absorb that of fa- 
mily ? The Deputies of the Commons then have nothing to 
oppose to the Deputies of the two first Orders, except the mi- 
i of twenty millions of men, or the despair which results 
from it. 

They can balance the sentiment of interest in those corps on- 
ly by the sentiment of the interest of the People, on which the 
public safety depends. Thus whether they vote as an order or 
individually, the struggle is unequal on their part ; for they 
have reason to fear on the part of the other two Orders, the 
loss of votes from the attractions of fortune, whereas they have 
no hopes of gaining any but by those of virtue. 

We have compared the State to a tree, of which the particu- 
lar corps diverged into branches, and of which the People coll- 
ated the trunk. We have seen that the more the branches 


are multiplied, the more the trunk is enfeebled : but if, by a 
monstrosity of which Nature exhibits no example, the branches 
were more powerful than the trunk itself, the fall of that tree 
must be very easily effected. 

In order to render still more sensible the harmony necessary 
to the different members of the State, I shall employ an image 
now of very ancient standing. The Nation may be represent- 
ed s a ship; the People, with their labours, their arts and their 
.tree, is the hull of it, loaded with the naval stores, the 
p.- isions and the merchandize, of which the cargo constitutes 
the object of the voyage. To the hull must be proportioned all 
the other parts of the ship. The Nobility may be considered 
as the batteries which defend it ; the Ciergy as the masts and 
sails which put and keep it in motion ; the opinions political, 
moral and religious, as the winds which drive it, sometimes to 
the right, sometimes to the left ; Administration as the cor- 
dage and pulleys which vary the several manoeuvres ; Royalty 
as the helm which regulates it's course, and the King as the pi- 
lot. To the interests of the People therefore the King is bound 
principally to attend, as a pilot pays his chief attention to the 
hull of the vessel ; for if the upper parts are over loaded by 
masts too lofty, or by an artillery too ponderous, the v< ssel 
runs a risk of being overset. She is equally in dinger of unk- 
ing, if the worms silently corrode her bottom, and open a pas- 
sage for admitting the water. 

In following out this allegory, the power of the People ought 
to exceed in ponderosity that of the other two bodies, that the 
vessel of the state may be always brought back to it's equili- 
brium. Now it happens with the lapse of time in a State, as 
in the course of a voyage, in a vessel whose hull becomes light- 
er and lighter from the consumption of provisions and ship's- 
stores, which are removed from the lower parts of the ship to 
the higher. Thus the People has a constant tendency to rise 
towards the clerical and noble orders, by the attraction of be- 
nefices and patents of Nobility. The King therefore ought to 
oppose the power of the helm, to the united preponderating 
force of the Clergy and Nobility, in favour of that of the Pro- 
pie, which needs the counterpoise of the Royal power to keep 
the balance even. Hence results the necessity then of increas- 


ingthe number of the Deputies of the Commons in the National 
Assembly, in order to give the King himself the facility of ex- 
ercising his proper power, which consists entirely in maintaining 
the political equilibrium. It is the preponderancy in number 
of the Representatives of the Commons over those of the Up- 
per House, which secures in England the Constitution of the 
State. This is the reason that in their political contentions, it 
is very easily restored to an equilibrium, because the interest 
of the People, which is the national interest, ever predominates 
there from the superior number of their Representatives. We 
may on the contrary compare several States of Europe, singu- 
larly remarkable for their feebleness, because the Clergy, or the 
Nobility, or both in concert, domineer without the concurrence 
of the People, to vessels overset, from being top-heavy, which 
are totally incapable of manoeuvring, but still keep floating, be- 
cause the surrounding sea is in a state of tranquillity, but which, 
the moment the storm arises, are in danger of going to the 

In the mean time, till experience shall have instructed us in 
what proportion the Clergy and Noblesse on one part, and the 
Commons on the other, ought to have Deputies in the National 
Assembly, to preserve in it an equilibrium of power, it seems to 
me necessary to regulate it conformably to certain principles, 
without which it is impossible to frame any sage project, still 
more to execute it. 

1. The first principle which ought to be laid down is, That 
no proposition be there received or rejected by acclamation, but 
that at least one day be allowed for every Deputy to deliberate 
upon it at leisure ; his opinion ought to be delivered in writing, 
that he may be enabled to preserve, by examination, the liberty 
ot his judgment, and by scrutiny, that of his suffrage. 

One of the irregularities which have given me most offence in 
mduct of our Assemblies even the gravest, is the hastiness 
ir judgments, and the tardiness of my own. I have never 
I any one question proposed in them, but it has been driven 
to a decision before I had time so much as to look into it. Nor 
am I the only one who has been placed in this aukward situa- 
tion. A celebrated Navigator, who made the tour of the Globe, 
found himself at first very much embarrassed on his return to 


Paris. His compatriots and friends, men of intelligence, ques 
tioned him all in a breath about what he had seen in foreign 
countries. He was at a loss how to satisfy them ; but soon found 
himself very much at his ease, for he perceived that the ques- 
tioners on his right hand immediately replied, and definitively, 
to those on his left, and those on his left to the enquiries of 
those on his right, so that all he had to do was to hold his 
tongue. For my own part, I acknowledge, I am incapable of 
deciding at the moment whether I should accept a simple in- 
vitation to dine in the country, of which I am very fond, till I 
have turned it over in my mind for some time, and by myself. 
I must first consider, not what kind of weather it is likely to 
be, but the character of the master and mistress of the house, 
that of their friends, of their cousins, of their wits, of their 
hangers-on, of their interlopers ; lest instead of going to a party 
of pleasure, I should fall into a party of an opposite description, 
as has frequently happened to me, for want of having exercised 
a little reflection. 

To return to our public Assemblies, What member of them 
would choose to decide instantly on a proposition which affect- 
ed his private fortune ? How much more powerful reasons has 
he to act with deliberation when the fortune of the Nation is at 
stake ? It is fit then that each of them should have an opportu- 
nitv of examining at leisure what he is going to determine for 
the whole community, and irrevocably ; it is farther proper that 
he should deliver his decision not viva voce, after the French 
manner, but in writing, after the manner of the Romans. No- 
thing can be more inconsistent with the gravity and wisdom of 
a deliberative assembly than acclamation. If the person who 
brings forward a motion has a commanding voice, a good stock 
of impudence and partisans to support him, as all the ambitious 
have, he carries the multitude along with him, who are seldom 
much disposed to resist those who make a great deal of noise ; 
he will on the spur of the moment induce a whole Assembly to 
adopt projects the most dangerous, and immediately bind it 
down by the obligation of an oath, and thereby deprive it even 
of the miserable resource of repentance. A man of sense who 
foresees the consequences, will not have the courage singly to 
brave a powerful party, for fear of creating to himself personal 


enemies, or he will himself require time to digest his own opi- 
nion in private ; or he may be deficient in facility of expression 
to deliver it in public. Besides, where are the means of leading 
persons to form a judgment of their own who never exist but 
in the opinion of another, and of engaging a multitude to retract 
a measure of which they have expressed their approbation by an 
applause so boisterous ? Deliberate judgments formed in retire- 
ment, and declared in writing, are liable to none of these incon- 
veniencies ; and if proofs of this were requisite, we should find 
them in the Assemblies of all intelligent Nations, ancient and 

In the National Assembly, ought the votes to be collected by 
orders or individually ? This question, which has been the sub- 
ject of much discussion, seems to me to carry it's solution in it's 
bosom. As every particular Deputy is a member of the Na- 
tional Assembly, he ought to lose sight in it of the interest of 
his order, and devote his whole attention to that of the Nation. 
He ought therefore to vote as an individual, like a citizen who 
has no other object but the public interest, and not by his order, 
because every order has a particular interest. Certain patriots 
have proposed to admit voting by poll when the question con- 
cerned the national interest, and by orders when the particular 
interest of an order was under discussion. But when a motion 
which particularly interests any order is introduced into the 
National Assembly, it must be because it is likewise interesting 
to the Nation at large, otherwise it would not be proposed 
there. Do not the greatest part of public abuses affect some one 
order in particular? To permit them to be decided by others, 
of which each has it's veto, is the same thing as leaving them 

Voting by poll has likewise it's inconveniencies ; but, I repeat 
it, they are such only to the People ; for, in order to the main- 
tenance of their equilibrium, they must reckon on the virtue of 
their Deputies, exposed at it is to very dangerous seduction, and 
on the still greater virtue of the Deputies of the other two or- 
ders, of whom the Nation demands a sacrifice of many privi- 
leges no less seductive. 

Other political Writers have proposed to submit certain diffi- 
cult cases to the judgment of a Committee formed of the mem- 


bers of all the three orders. When Rome and Alba wished fi- 
nally to terminate their contentions, Rome committed the ma- 
nagement of her cause to the three Horatii, and Alba of her's 
to the three Curiatii : but I am persuaded, that had the decision 
been left to the pen, as in many other cases, it would never have 
come to a termination. The sword cut it short, because the con- 
tending parties were two hostile cities : but the corps which 
compose our Assembly are members of the same Nation ; they 
ought to have a constant tendency to unite, and never to fight. 
Many Deputies of the Clergy and Nobility have exhibited, by 
submitting to sacrifices of every kind, the most respectable 
proofs of generosity and patriotism. In order to heighten the 
sentiment in all the three orders, and to establish mutual confi- 
dence among them, I could wish that any one order, in embar- 
rassing cases, instead of appointing champions of their interests 
from among their own members, would choose them on the con- 
trary from among those whom they esteemed persons of the 
greatest worth in the opposite order. 

By simply changing the interests of the parties, very difficult 
cases have sometimes been resolved. Let us recollect, as La 
Fontaine has given it, the testament explained by Esop. 

" A certain man had three daughters, all of them of a cha- 
M racter extremely different, a tippler, a coquet, a complete mi- 
" ser. By his will, conformably to the municipal laws, he left 
" them his whole property in equal proportions, giving so much 
" to their mother, payable when each of the daughters should 
" no longer possess the portion allotted to her." 

The Court of Areopagus at first divided the inheritance a- 
greeably to their several inclinations. 

" Three lots were made up : the one containing drinking 
" country-seats, buffets well stored under verdant arbours, plate, 
" bottle-cisterns, wine-flagons, cellars filled with malmsey, all 
u the apparatus of the kitchen, in a word, the whole provoca- 
" tives to sensual conviviality. The second contained all the 
" supplies of coquetry, the town-house elegantly furnished, va- 
" lets de chambre, hair-dressers, embroiderers, silks and satins, 
" jewels ; and the third lot comprehended the farms, the stock, 
" the cattle, the arable, the pasture, the men and the beasts of 
" agriculture." 


But on this allotment, each daughter satisfied with the por- 
tion assigned to her, the old lady soon found herself pennyless ; 
because she was entitled to nothing till each of her daughters 
" should no longer possess the portion allotted to her." 

op distributed their lots very differently from the decision 
of the Areopagites. He gave, " To the coquet, the instruments 
" of loose and luxurious dissipation ; to the tippling lady the 
" farm-yard, and the economist got the frippery." Upon this 
each of the young ladies, dissatisfied with her legacy, presently 
disposed of it, and the mother got her dowery. 

The three sisters, without making invidious applications, are 
our three orders ; and their mother is the Nation, who reclaims 
her dower out of their part of the inheritance when they have 
disposed of it. 

If a permutation of interest simply may sometimes accommo- 
date matters, I imagine that a permutation of the interested 
might likewise bring the parties to agree, which is still more 
difficult. Of this at least I am certain, that every thing is to be 
obtained of a Frenchman by applying to the sentiment of ho- 
nour. The Clergy and Nobility have sacrificed their pecuniary 
privileges, and have resisted the deprivation of their honorary 
rights only. But if some of those rights lay heavy on agricul- 
ture, and if the people, in order to oppose to them those of hu- 
manity, were to choose their advocates from among the most 
respectable of the Clergy and Nobility, I have no doubt that 
they would be abolished. On the other hand, I am equally con- 
vinced that if the Clergy and Nobility were to select from the 
House of Commons the champions of the honorary rights grant- 
ed to the dignity of their places, or to the virtue of their ances- 
tors, those rights would be preserved to them ; and that if they 
were found to be incompatible with the dignity of man and with 
national liberty, thev would receive a magnificent indemnifica- 
tion, such as by those of adoptions, which would render them in 
future the alone sources of hereditary Nobility : besides, Could 
twenty millions of men possibly be destitute of the means of 
iout upon their Nobles, when those Nobles made 
roximation towards tl 

I should imagine therefore that a committee of confidence, 
ied reciprocally of arbiters selected in each order, by the or 

Vol. III. R r 


der opposite to it in point of interest, would substitute in p 
of political intrigue, which embarrasses the simplest affairs, the 
frankness of generosity, which simplifies the most embarrassed. 
Would the orders of our National Assembly have less magna- 
nimity than the ancient Gauls our ancestors, and would they 
have less confidence in each other than foreign Nations have 
mutually expressed ? When Annibal passed through the Gauls, 
the People of that Country stipulated with him, that if they 
should have any ground of complaint against the Carthaginians, 
they would refer it to the decision of the Carthaginian Chiefs ; 
but that if the Carthaginians in turn should have any reason to 
complain of the Gauls, the women of the People last named 
should decide on the justness of such complaints. These two 
nations must have lived in perfectly good understanding with 
each other, thus mutually to confide in the principle of generosi- 
ty, and to choose the umpires of their differences in that which 
was most worthy of respect and confidence in the opposite party. 
There is reason to believe that in certain cases reference might 
have been safely made to the justice of Annibal himself, equally 
interested to give satisfaction to both parties ; and who, among 
other great talents, had the art of conciliating the affections of 
the various nations of which his army was composed. Where- 
fore should not the three orders of our Nation repose equal con- 
fidence in the equity of the King, who is their natural Mediator, 
and who has so often sacrificed his personal to the public in- 
terest ? 

2. The second principle on which the future Constitution of 
the State ought to rest, is the permanency of the National As- 
sembly, and the periodical rotation of it's Members. 

By means of the permanency of the Assembly, there will be 
a unity of all the parts of the Administration already constituted 
in a great part of the Kingdom, in Assemblies of Villages, of 
Cities and of Provinces. The National Assembly which forms 
their centre, ought to place continually under the King's eye the 
men and the. affairs of the Nation, and establish between him and 
the lowest of his subjects a perpetual communication of intelli- 
gence, of services, of protection and of support, which it shall 
not be in the power of any intermediate body to intercept ; which 


Would not fail to happen, were the National Assembly only pe- 
riodical, as some had proposed. 

On the other hand, by means of the periodical rotation of the 
Members of the National Assembly, no one of them will be al- 
lowed time to identify himself with his place, and to become an 
agent of despotism, by suffering himself to be corrupted by 
ministerial influence, or that of aristocracy, still more danger- 
ous than despotism. 

It appears to me that the Members of this Assembly ought 
to be renewed every three, or every five years, as may be found 
most expedient, but not all at once, as in England, but only the 
third or fifth part every year, that the major part of it's mem- 
bers may be always in the habit of transacting public business. 

It will never be in the power of the National Assembly to en- 
croach on the prerogatives of the Crown, because it's Members 
will be undergoing an incessant change, because it will be com- 
posed of two powers which balance each other under the influ- 
ence of Royalty, and because it will be a fundamental law of the 
future Constitution, as it is of the Monarchy, that no proposi- 
tion shall receive under it the force of a law, till sanctioned by 
the King. 

3. A third principle essential to the future Constitution of 
France, and to the unity of it's parts, is the establishment of As- 
semblies at once permanent and periodical in all the Villages, 
Cities and Provinces of the Kingdom, after the model of the 
National Assembly, with which they ought to correspond. 

Such Assemblies ought to be formed in every quarter of Pa- 
ris, and from them should be selected Deputies to compose the 
Municipal Assembly, that this immense City with it's quarters, 
may be assimilated to a Province with it's districts. 

These dispositions ought to be extended to our Colonies ; 
but if it be a matter of justice to admit their white Deputies in- 
to the National Assembly, it is no less so to call into it their 
black Deputies, in the class of free blacks ; as being emp:> 
in the culture and the defence of our colonies, they are not less 
interested than other citizens to deliberate on the interests of the 
Mother Country. Farther, the introduction of free blacks into 
the National Assembly will pave the way for the abolition of 
:rv in the Colonies fust as the admission of freemen into 


our ancient States-General prepared the way for the abolition 
of feudal servitude which had invaded a part of the Gauls. Fi- 
nallv, those men born under another sky, repelled by their own 
country, and partaking in the blessings of ours, will add to the 
majesty of an Assembly which takes all the unfortunate under 
it's protection, and they will concur perhaps in securing one day 
to it's humanity, a glory which conquerors never derived from 
their victories, that of seeing in it's bosom the Deputies of all 
Nations voting the prosperity of France. 

As to the qualifications necessary to an Elector in the Rural, 
Municipal, Provincial and National Assemblies, it appears to 
me essential to possess a portion of arable land, as in England, 
in order to put respect on agriculture and to prevent the plu- 
rality of Electors from being composed of indigent persons, 
whom necessity might compel to sell their votes; but on the 
other hand I deem it useless and unjust to require, as in Eng- 
land, a territorial property still greater of each Deputy of the 
National Assembly; for it is certain that the Electors being 
above absolute want, will never be exposed to the danger of 
corruption by Deputies without fortune, and that Deputies 
without fortune, chosen by Electors whom they had not the 
means of corrupting, must possess personal qualifications high- 
ly respectable. It is possible without doubt, in that class of 
men of all descriptions so very numerous, who have no proper- 
ty, there may be found citizens superiorly enlightened and truly 
patriotic, whose very poverty is to be ascribed to their virtues ; 
a Socrates, an Arts tides, an Epaminondas, a Belisarius, a Jolin 
James Rousseau. 

The Deputies ought to have all their expenses honourably 
defrayed. On this subject I have heard some persons maintain 
a false point of honour, under a pretence that the Deputies of 
their country ought to serve her gratuitously. But as all those 
who serve her in corps which are not always engaged in the 
public service, receive payment from her, from Cardinals down 
to Vergers, from Marshals of France down to Sentinels, and 
from the Chancellor down to the petty Clerk, wherefore should 
it not be so likewise with the members of the National Assem- 
bly I It is as just that those who directly serve their Country 
should live by their Country, as that those who minister at the 


Altar should live by the Altar. It is besides the only means of 
opening the doors of those Assemblies to men of merit who 
happen to be poor. Every Deputy of the National Assembly 
ought therefore to receive an honourable maintenance, not from 
the Order of the Province which he represents, but from the 
Nation, for the express purpose of impressing upon his mind 
that he has ceased to be the Deputy of his Order and of his 
Province, that he may become a Member of the Nation. This 
maintenance ought to be equal for the Deputies of all the Or- 
ders, because their services are equal : and however slender it 
may be, it onght to be considered by each of them as equally ho- 
nourable with that which Kings grant to their Ambassadors, as 
they receive it from the People, whose pensioners Kings them- 
selves are. 

These general dispositions being made or rectified on the 
best plans, there is no species of abuse but what, in time, the 
permanent and periodical Assemblies of Villages, of Cities and 
of Provinces, might reform, and no species of good but what 
they might effect. Most certainly in places where they are es- 
tablished, it has not been perceived that they have trenched 
upon the liberty of the People, or on the Royal Authority, both 
of which they elucidate and support : it will apply equally to 
the National Assembly, which ought to be their centre. 

This being laid down, the Assembly thus constituted under 
the eyes of the King, as the Nation itself which it represents, 
ever permanent, and incessantly renovating itself, will devote 
it's attention to the abolition of evil, prior to making efforts to 
do good. 

It will begin with abolishing every thing that bears hard on 
agriculture, that nursing mother of the State, such as captainries, 
game-laws, gabels, corvees, militia-draughts, and tollage ; those 
burdens which oppress commerce, such as excessive and dispro- 
portionate duties, tolls on the navigation of rivers, the tax on 
vines on entering into cities, which ought to pay in proportion 
to their value ; those which distress the body politic, such as 
the sale of employments, reversions, unmerited pensions ; final- 
ly those which attack the liberty of Man in his opinions, in his 
conscience, and even in his person, such as the servitude of the 
inhabitants of Mount Jura, and the slavery of the Negroes in 


our Colonies. It vvill proceed to rtform our Code of Civil and 
Criminal Justice ; our mode of Education, without which no 
plan of Legislation can be lasting; and after having remedied 
the evils in which our posterity is interested, the Assembly will 
extend it's views to those which respect other Nations, and 
communicate themselves to us by means of the corresponden- 
cies which Nature has established among all the families of the 
human race. 

The provincial reports shew that most of these objects have 
actually been taken into consideration ; but I question whether 
the National Assembly, with whom the work of reformation 
lies, have the power of providing for them by precise and inva- 
riable Laws ; for, as has been said, men can lay hold only of 
harmonies, that is, of those truths which are always between 
two contraries : hence it comes to pass that the Laws in every 
Country are variable, and change with manners and the lapse 
of time. From these must be excepted the Laws of Nature, 
which never vary, because they are the bases of the general har- 
mony, which alone is steadfast. By these all the others must be 
regulated. It belongs therefore to the wisdom of the National 
Assembly to lay hold, on every point of Legislation, of a harmo- 
nic medium, and to support it ; this renders the permanency of 
the Assembly a matter of necessity, as has been oftener than 
once repeated. As to what remains, many excellent memori- 
als having appeared on most of those subjects, I shall only sug- 
gest a few considerations which may perhaps have been over- 
looked, but which I deem to be of high importance, because 
they affect the People, whose interest is the interest of the 

The King has already declared his paternal intentions on the 
subject of his captaimries, which destroy, for the sake of the 
pame, the crops of the peasants, and send to the galleys the pea- 
sants who destroy the game. We may flatter ourselves with 
the hope that, after his Majesty's example, the great Lords 
will of themselves regulate and restrict their rights of chase, 
Avhich are likewise petty captainries. 

The gabel, that other nursery of galley-birds, has likewise 
attracted the paternal regards of the King : there is reason to 
hope that this impost will be done away ; that the farms of our 


plains will enjoy in abundance the use of salt, an article so ne- 
cessary to the cattle ; and that the sea, the fourth element, will 
be rendered as free to Frenchmen, as the other three elements 
of the globe. 

May his Majesty, to draw down the benediction of Heaven 
on the operations of his National Assembly, liberate from pri- 
sons and from galleys those of his subjects who are the victims 
of disastrous Laws, of captainries and of gabels ! 

The peasantry ought farther to be relieved of the burden of 
service on the highways, or of the money which they pay to 
redeem it, by levying a contribution for their repair, not only 
on the abbeys and castles of their districts, but on the trading- 
towns to whose benefit the great roads are principally subser- 
vient, as well as on travellers who injure them by riding on 
horseback or in carriages. There ought to be established, for 
this purpose, from post to post, gates and tolls, as in England, 
in Holland, and over a considerable part of Germany. 

As to the Militia, the Nobility seems to be afraid of bearing 
the burden of it, whether in person, or in money : the defence 
of the State however appears to devolve principally on them, 
seeing that this order has hitherto been altogether military. 
On this consideration alone were their titles in former times 
conferred, with their fiefs and their prerogatives, which they 
contrived to render hereditary. They have reserved the bene- 
fit to themselves, and left the burden of it on the People. But 
my wish being to ease the peasantry of the heavy load of the 
Militia Service, and, which is worse to Frenchmen, from it's 
stigma, for it is become a mark of villanage, it must undoubtedly 
be my desire to have it laid on the Nobility. Far from wish- 
ing to degrade Nobility to a state of villanage, my object is to 
raise meanness of birth into Nobility, or rather my object is to 
ennoble virtue, and that vice only should be deemed a degra- 
dation. We ought therefore to rescue from every dishonour- 
able stain Agriculture, the most noble of all arts, and the only 
one, all whose functions are compatible with virtue. 

It is likewise devoutly to be wished that the industry, the 
commerce, the urbanity and the opulence of our cities, might 
be diffused over our plains, the inhabitants of which are so poor 
and so miserable. It is a certain fact that the greater part of 


our burghers concentrate themselves in cities merely to evad< 
the payment of the rustic impost of tollage, and to prevent the 
draughting of their children into the Militia. On the other 
hand, though our peasants, who have not the same ideas of ho- 
nour respecting the moral nature of impositions, are sensible 
only to their fiscal pressure, nothing has hitherto been able to 
reconcile them to the scourge of the Militia, because it attacks 
the sweetest feelings of Nature, by depriving them of their 
children. It is the terror of the Militia which induces them to 
send off their children into the Cities, preferring to make lackeys 
of them rather than soldiers. From the tollage therefore, and 
the Militia-draughts, this evil results, that the Country is de- 
populated, and our Cities overstocked with inhabitants. As 
the fiscal impost of tollage will be supplied by a territorial as- 
sessment, to be levied equally on proprietors of every rank, here 
will be at once one great obstacle removed out of the way of 
agriculture. As to the personal impost of the Militia, it does 
not appear so easy to find a substitute. It seems very strange 
that with us it should be esteemed an honour to serve the King 
in a military capacity, and a species of disgrace to be draughted 
into the Militia. I perceive two reasons for this contradiction : 
the first is that the Militia Service is imposed by force ; the se- 
cond, as I have already suggested, because it is a proof of .vil- 
lanage, for persons of birth are not draughted into it. The for- 
mer of these reasons operates most powerfully on freemen ; the 
second is no less forcible with trades-people, whose children are 
trained to ambition by the public education ; thus the Militia is 
not less contrary to national prejudices, than to the sentiments 
of Nature. 

The fear of the Militia is likewise one of the great reasons 
which render it an object of aversion to our ) r ourig peasantry. 
The human heart is so jealous of it's liberty, that though the 
rank of Officer be honourable, and the pay liberal, I am con- 
vinced that not a single man of family would submit to accept 
it, were it to be forced upon him. Keep the gate of a public gar- 
den continually open, and very few will find themselves disposed 
to exercise the privilege of walking in it : place soldiers at the 
entry to force passengers in, and every body will flet far from 
it : keep it close locked, barred and bolted, with a guard to keep 


the curious at a distance, and every one will make an effort to 
get in, and eagerly produce his ticket of admission. 

In order to infuse into our village young men a taste for the 
service, I would begin with forbidding it to them. So far from 
making the condition of a militia-man a subject of terror, of 
shame, and sometimes of punishment, I would make it one of 
hope, of honour and of reward. I would begin with instruct- 
ing our young rustics, that it is only on the courage of it's most 
virtuous subjects, that our Country rests it's defence, and I 
would allow only to the most respectable among them the privi- 
lege of handling arms on holidays, of shooting at a mark, of 
learning the military exercise, and the like. We should then 
speedily perceive among them as much zeal to get into the Mi- 
litia, as they now discover reluctance. Should war take place, 
they would always be ready to march, not under the command 
of our simple Country Gentlemen, or of our purse-proud City 
Burgesses, like our Provincial Militias, but under that of Offi- 
cers grown gray in the service, who would find in such em- 
ployment a retreat more agreeable than the Hotel des Invalides. 

It would be necessary likewise to ameliorate the condition of 
our soldiery, whose pay is only five sols (2 l-2d) a day. In the 
time of Hcnnj IV. it was likewise five sols ; but the five sols 
of that period amount to more than twenty sols of to-day, the 
price of provisions being taken into the account. All that is re- 
quisite to have as many men as you please is to increase the pay 
of our soldiery, as in the case of cveiy other profession. This 
increase of pay might be granted them, by employing them in 
the labours of the high-ways, of the sea-ports, of the public mo- 
numents, Sec. just as the Roman soldiers were employed. On 
the other hand, the military funds will find a pecuniary increase 
produced by the imposts on the high-roads ; by a part of the 
sums expended on the Royal edifices, by the rents of fiefs both 
noble and ecclesiastic, formerly burthened with military service, 
by contributions to be still furnished by the Corporations of Ci- 
ties, in a word by savings to be made on the pensions, by far 
too numerous and too considerable, of the staff of the Army. 
These resources seem to me sufficient for the maintenance, and 
to keep alive the emulation, of our soldiers, especially if they 
have the farther encouragement, as retreats and expectancies, of 
Vol. III. Ss 


becoming city-guards, highway patrols, not to mention a great 
number of petty civil employments, as in Prussia ; and if there 
be presented to them in the service itself, a clear road to the at- 
tainment of every military rank, as is the case in all the coun- 
tries of the World. 

Military servitude being removed from the necks of our rus- 
tics, the rivers and sea-ports must be purged of nautic bondage. 
No seamen should be forced to serve on board his Majesty's 
ships of war, though the provision made for mariners in the Na- 
vy is more liberal than that of our soldiery. We must take care 
how we imitate the English, who, in order to obtain seamen to 
man the Navy in time of war, press them into the service, a 
practice still more unjust than that of our Militia-draughts. 
Hew comes it that our merchant ships find mure hands than 
they have occasion lor ? It is because they give good pay. 
Wherefore then should the State be less equitable towards sea- 
men than merchants are ? It possesses means incomparably more 
abundant. It may increase the revenue of the Marine, by em- 
ploying in time of peace both it's ships and men in the carrying 
trade, and in a variety of nautical services : it can hold out to 
the seamen retreats innumerable in our arsenals, in our ports, 
on our rivers, and even in our Colonies. 

Every Frenchman ought to have besides the hope of rising, 
by merit, to the very highest rank in the line of his profession, 
without birth, without money and without intrigue. To this li- 
berty, and to those prospects it is that France owed her great- 
ness under despotism itself, and particularly under that of Lou- 
is XIV. the most absolute of all our despots. It is observable 
that since the days of this Prince, talents have made a less shi- 
ning figure in France, precisely in the parts of Administration 
the corps of which have become aristocratic. It is infinitely bet- 
ter assuredly that the State should be honoured, enriched, saved 
by the son of a peasant, than disgraced, impoverished, ruined 
by the son of a Prince. Thus, as from what the past has pro- 
duced, a man in the ranks shall have it in his power to become 
Mareschal of France ; a common Sailor, Commodore, and even 
Admiral ; a private Tutor in a College, Grand Almoner ; and 
Advocate, Chancellor : that we may see revived among us the 
Friers^ the John Barls, the Amiots, the VHopitah of othc: 


times. Rome was indebted, at all periods, for her unity, her 
power and her duration, only to her granting to all her Citizens 
the capability of rising to every thing. Modern Rome, as an- 
cient Rome, has held out to all dignities, triumphs, empire, nay 
deification itself. 

The civil liberty of rising in France to her highest employ- 
ments, ought therefore to be extended to all her Citizens, because 
it is a Frenchman's right. As to individual or personal Liber- 
ty, it appertains to natural right : every Frenchman has the right 
of quitting his City, his Province, and the Kingdom, just as he 
goes when he pleases out of his own house. This liberty can 
be restrained by passports only in times of trouble. It is the 
safety of the People which ought to be the rule of the exceptions 
made, as it ought to be that of every political law whatever. 

Liberty of thought has been a subject of much discussion. 
It is self-evident that no Government can deprive any person of 
it. I may be, in my own mind, as republican as a Spartan, at 
Constantinople, or a Jew at Goa. Conscience is accountable 
to GOD only : it is a state out of the jurisdiction of every ty- 
rant. It is penetrable by persuasion alone, and not by force. 
It is a flower which expands to the rays of the Sun, but which 
shuts itself against the stormy blast. Thus passive liberty of 
thought is a right derived from Nature. As to active Liberty, 
or that of publishing a man's thoughts, it is reduced to liberty 
of speech : now liberty of speech ought to be regulated in a 
State, as the liberty of action. Most certainly permission can- 
not be given to any person to act in a manner that is injurious 
to society, or to it's members, neither therefore ought it to be 
allowed to publish thoughts which have this tendency. I am 
even of opinion that the National Assembly ought to enact Lavs 
more rigorous than any yet existing, against calumniators, the 
most detestable of all mankind, as the mischief done by their 
words is greater and more lasting than that which highwaymen 
commit by their actions. The liberty of publishing one's 
thoughts, or the Liberty of the Press, ought therefore to be re- 
gulated by the liberty of acting, and as this last ought not to be 
subjected to any constraint when the public happiness is con- 
ied, public good ought to be the rule of the Liberty of the 



Religious liberty, or liberty of conscience properly so called, 
is, like liberty of thought, not only a branch of natural right, but 
of the Law of Nations : it flows from that maxim of universal 
justice : " Do not to another what you would not wish done to 
" yourself." Now as we demand in foreign Countries the li- 
berty of exercising our Religion, we ought to grant strangers, 
in our turn, the same liberty in our Country. Most of the Na- 
tions of Asia grant this to men of every description, with even 
the liberty of preaching in their own way. Without this mutual 
toleration there could be no communication of intelligence, nor 
even of commerce, among mankind. All nations of men would 
be sequestrated from each other as the Japanese are from Eu- 
ropeans. If by means of intolerance the door is shut in States 
against error, it is likewise shut against truth ; the Nation is 
deprived of the natural right of which our ancestors availed 
themselves, when they freely received the Religion which we 
profess, and they besides withhold the liberty of diffusing it 
among other Nations to whom we do not grant reciprocal rights. 
In order to entitle Europeans to arrogate to themselves the pre- 
rogative of sending Missionaries to Japan, the Japanese should 
likewise have perfect liberty to send Missionaries to Europe. 
Nevertheless, as the glory of GOD and the good of Mankind 
ought to be the basis of all Legislation, it is proper not to tole- 
rate superstitious religions, which subject Man to Man, and not 
Man to GOD, or such as are themselves intolerant, which dis- 
turb the communication between Man and Man, which damn 
each other, without any mutual knowledge of what they are, 
which teach them to torment their fellow-creatures, or them- 
selves, in the view of pleasing GOD, who is notwithstanding the 
father and the friend of Mankind. 

As it is not reasonable that the Frenchman who wishes him- 
self to be free in France should be a tyrant in other parts of the 
World, it is necessary to abolish the slavery of the Negroes, in 
our African and American Colonies ; here is committed not 
only the interest of the Nation, but that of the Human Race. 
Maladies physical and moral without number flow from this 
\ iolation of the Law of Nature. To say nothing of the wars 
originating in the Slave-Trade, and which, like all those of Eu- 
rope, extend to the extremities of the Earth, the physical mala 


dies of the climate of Negroes, such as the fevers on the Guinea- 
coast, have carried off multitudes of our seamen and soldiers : 
others, such as the venereal, have become naturalized in our 
Colonies. But moral maladies are more dangerous, more du- 
rable, and more expansive. 

It were possible to prove that most of the opinions which at 
different times have embroiled Europe, are an importation from 
distant Countries. Jansenism, for example, appears to have 
been introduced from the East by the Croisades, together with 
the Plague and the Leprosy : we find at least the maxims of 
Jansenism in the Mahometan Theologians quoted by Char din. 
The Plague and the Leprosy subsist no longer among us, but 
Jansenism maintains it's ground and is making way, it is said, 
i vca in Spain. It cannot be doubted that our opinions in their 
turn may have troubled the repose of other Nations, witness our 
religious quarrels, which have put the people of China on their 
guard against us, and have procured our expulsion from Japan. 
The Inquisition, which commenced at Rome in 1204, during 
the first Croisades, spread at first over part of Italy, and thence 
over Spain and Portugal ; it laid waste, by the general inter- 
communication with these Nations, a part of the Coasts of Asia 
and Africa, and more than the half of America. In 1566, it 
constrained the Dutch to shake off the Spanish yoke. About 
the same time nearly, it obliged the Nations of the North of 
Europe to separate from the Church of Rome ; and those to the 
South who remained Catholics, to oppose the most powerful 
barriers to it ; afterwards, like a ferocious wild beast, turning 
upon it's keepers for want of other prey, it ceased not to diffuse 
terror over the countries which had given it birth ; it being the 
will of GOD, by an act of his universal justice, that intolerant 
Nations should find their punishment in the very tribunals of 
their intolei\ance. 

The slavery of the Negroes, which we have established in 
our Colonies, in imitation of the Portuguese and Spaniards, has 
produced re-actions nearly similar ; for the inhabitants of the 
Colonies forming now-a-days, by means of their wealth, alli- 
s with our high Nobility, accustom them insensibly to con- 
sider the whole people who nourish them in France, as destined 
to slavery, as well as the blacks who cultivate their possessions 


in America. It is to the influence of this tyrannical spirit, which 
lias infected even our Administration, that we are to impute the 
strange ordonnance of the War Department already quoted, by 
which it was some years ago declared, that no person under the 
rank of Nobility could serve his Majesty in the rank of an offi- 
cer in the army ; an ordonnance highly injurious to the French 
Nation, and of which I do not believe there is an example to be 
found in any Nation on the face of the Earth, and at no period 
of the History of our Monarchy previous to that of the estab- 
lishment of slavery in the Colonies. The motive indeed is ex- 
cusable, and I have made the apology, namely, the necessity of 
reserving honourable employments for poor men of family : but 
the Nobility cannot be honoured when the People is debased ; 
for the highest degree of distinction to which Nobility itself can 
rise, is to be like that of ancient Rome, at the head of a distin- 
guished People. 

Regulations similar to that of the War Department have in- 
sinuated themselves into every other corps. The Clergy must 
have no Bishops but such as are of noble extraction ; they have 
forgotten that the Apostles were simple fishermen. What do I 
say ? The greatest part of our Ecclesiastics, though of ignoble 
birth, pay little respect to their Chiefs, unless they are actually 
men of family. For some years past, the Parliaments make a 
point of having several degrees of Nobility as a qualification for 
being counsellor of the first Bench, and thus detach their inte- 
rests from those of the People, whose children they are by birth, 
and whose fathers they ought to be by their functions. The 
same thing takes place in our municipal, financial and trading 
companies, who reserve their posts of honour for the Nobility. 
In a word, down to our corps of literati, men of science and ar- 
tists, they elect, when they can, their Chiefs from the body of the 
Nobility, sometimes men wholly illiterate, though these bodies, 
being professedly Republics, ought to regulate their places of 
distinction by no standard but that of merit. Louis XIV. did 
not think in this manner, when a Cardinal, under pretence of 
the gout, having requested the indulgence of an easy chair at 
the sittings of the French Academy, of which he was a Mem- 
ber, the King, instead of one easy chair, sent forty to the Acade- 
my, that no one of it's members, whatever were his qualifica- 


tions in other respects, might arrogate to himself any other dis- 
tinction besides that which genius confers. Now I believe that 
this servile spirit, which the people of all conditions at this day 
voluntarily imbibe, originally infected us from the establishment 
of slavery in the Colonies ; for prior to that I find nothing simi- 
lar in our History. From this era likewise we may date the 
multiplicity of titles, financial, literary, and other qualifications, 
with which every one now affects to lengthen out his name, for 
want of the addition which counties, baronies and marquisates 
bestow ; whereas formerly men of the very highest quality made 
no addition to their family name, but that which was given them 
in baptism. We find examples still more striking and more 
numerous of this abuse of titles, among the Portuguese and 
Spaniards, because they preceded us in the establishment of 
slavery in the Indies, and in expressing contempt for the People 
at home. 

Those tyrannical opinions, already so widely diffused over 
France, take their birth in the slavery of our American islands, 
as in a continually existing focus of servitude, and propagating 
itself to Europe through the channel of their commerce, just as 
the pestilence conveys itself from Egypt with the other produc- 
tions of the Country. Now as we have not hitherto established 
on the Coasts of France a quarantine for men coming from beyond 
Seas, under the infection, by birth, by habit and by interest, of 
the spirit of slavery, and as the depravation of minds is still 
more contagious than any bodily distemper, it is a matter of ab- 
solute necessity that the slavery of the Negroes should be abo- 
lished in our Colonies, for fear that one day it should extend 
itself, through the influence of the opinion of some opulent in- 
dividuals, over the white but poor People of the Mother Coun- 
try. The English, who take the lead of us in maturity and in 
wisdom, have already taken into consideration this cause of the 
Human Race ; it is going to be pleaded in their Parliament as it 
ought to have been in the court of Areopagus. There is form- 
ed at Paris as at London a Society, the declared friends and 
patrons of the poor black slaves, at least as worth)" of the public 
esteem as that of la Merci. It belongs to this respectable So- 
to carry the grievances of those unfortunate beings before 
die National Assemblv. 


But as we must not go to ruin the men whom we wish to it 
form, I observe, in favour of the inhabitants of our Colonies, 
that it will be proper to proceed gradually toward the abolition 
of the servitude of their black slaves ; otherwise it will be an 
unspeakable calamity to the Negroes as well as their Masters. 
Political revolutions should be periodical like those of Nature. 
The first step to be taken, is to dry up the source of slavery in 
the islands, by prohibiting the Slave Trade on the coast of Af- 
rica ; afterwards the personal servitude of the Negroes may be 
reduced to that of the glebe ; then that of the glebe to enfran- 
chisement, which may be made to depend on their good con- 
duct toward their Masters, that to them in part they may be 
laid under obligation for the recovery of their liberty. 

It is the more easy to effect these changes, that the cultiva- 
tion of the islands is much less painful and expensive than that 
of a European soil. There is no occasion for heavy ploughs, 
nor harrows, nor horse harness, nor triple tillings, to plant the 
manioc, the maize, the potato, the coffee, the sugar-cane, the 
indigo, the cocoa-nut, the cotton-plant, as there is for our corns, 
our vines, our flaxes and our hemps. The fields of our islands 
are cultivated like our gardens at home, with the spade, the 
pick-axe, the hoe. The women and children are sufficient to 
raise most of their crops. 

The manufacture of sugars, it is true, requires expensive 
buildings, and the concurrence of many operators. The parti- 
sans of slavery have pretended from this to conclude the ne- 
cessity of employing troops of black slaves in the islands. This 
consequence so very feebly supported is, however, the most 
powerful argument they have to adduce against the liberty of 
the blacks. But there is no need in Europe of workshops 
crowded with slaves, to erect and carry on the manufactures of 
tannery, of tapestry, of paper, of arms, of pins, Sec. which re- 
quire a greater concourse of workmen, and more unity of opera- 
tion than those of sugar-making. Besides a planter who has 
got a sugar-mill, has no more occasion to raise all the canes of 
his canton, to engross the whole produce to himself, than the 
proprietor of a wine-press in Burgundy has occasion to engross 
all the vineyards on his hill. Those who with us weave the 
cloth do not raise the flax and the hemp, nor does the paper- 


maker go through the streets picking up the rags, nor do prin- 
ters and book-makers engage in the manufacture of paper. 
It is to the subdivision of labour and arts, in the hands of free- 
men, that their perfection in Europe is to be ascribed. Small 
properties in the hands of artisans are necessary to the pro- 
gress of industry, as those of land are to die progress of ag- 
riculture. Were the manufacturer of sugar in the Colonies 
to confine himself entirely to manufacturing, and the plan- 
ter to raising the canes, it would be unnecessary to refine the 
sugar of the islands after it came to Europe. They might spin 
there, as in India, the tow of the cocoa-nut case, the threads of 
the banana and the cotton, and work them into cordage and 
stuffs. The vast plantations of Saint Domingo and of the An- 
tilles, divided into small properties, and restored to freedom, 
would become likewise a scene of industry, and I will venture 
to say more agreeable, from the facility of culture, and the tem- 
perature of their climate, than the farms and the messuages of 
France, where the winters are so severe. They would afford a 
multitude of employments and jobs to numbers of our poor pea- 
sants and artificers, who are out of work in France ; and the 
Planters in our Colonies would find themselves richer, happier, 
and more distinguished, when instead of foreign slaves they 
would have farmers of their own countrymen, and signiories in- 
stead of plantations. 

I have no need to be diffuse on the abolition of the mortmain 
itude of the inhabitants of Mount Jura. It is passing 
strange that this servitude should have been kept up, to the pre- 
sent hour, in a corner of the Kingdom, by the Canons of Saint 
Claude, in defiance of the caresses of Louis XVI. of the prero- 
gatives of France, of the rights of Nature and the laws of the 
Gospel. The duration of this abuse demonstrates the power and 
the tyranny of corps. The Canons of Saint Claude will un- 
doubtedly resolve voluntarily to restore liberty to French pea- 
s, after the example of their virtuous Bishop, without being 
forced to it by the National Assembly, which has the right of 
redressing every injury done to the Nation. 

Ye Chiefs of the People of every rank ! I repeat it, in the 
name of Him who has united the destinies of all mankind, your 
happiness d< that of the People: if you hate them, 

Voi. III. ' Tt 


they will hate you ; they will repay you a hundred told the 
mischief you do them : but if you love them, they will love 
you ; if you protect them, they will protect you : you will be 
strong in their strength, aWyou are weak in their weakness. 
Do you wish yourselves to live in freedom ? make no attempt 
upon their liberty : would you wish to acquire illumination? do 
not blind them with prejudice 5 in order to tranquillize your 
own souls, do not disturb their spirits ; to maintain your own 
greatness, devise the means of their elevation : remember that 
you are the summit of the tree of which they are the stem. 

The National Assembly ought to devote particular atten- 
tion to the reform of the code of civil and criminal justice, 
which in it's present state is a monument of the ages of bar- 
barism, when the stronger oppressed the feebler. They will 
reform, for instance, that unnatural Law by which the testi- 
mony of a woman is declared to be valid to establish a crimi- 
nal charge, and of no avail toward attesting the simple taking 
possession of a benefice. They will abolish that other law which 
gives two-thirds of landed property to the eldest son of the fa- 
mily, the other third to the younger brothers taken together, 
were there a dozen of them, and simply a younger child's por- 
tion to be divided among all the sisters,' were they as many in 
number as the sons ; so that joining the expression of French 
gallantry to an inhuman disposition, it declares that a father 
may marry his daughter with a chaplet of roses, that is, with an 
empty pocket. This Law, which exists among the Nobility of 
a great part of the Kingdom, appears to be an importation from 
the barbarians of the North, in as much as it is in full vigour 
among even the peasantry of that part of Normandy called the 
Pais de Caux, where the Norman Dukes first settled. It is not 
known at Paris and it's vicinity, where brothers divide share 
and share alike with their sisters. This Capital of the King- 
dom would never have attained the point of opulence, of urba- 
nity, of intelligence and of splendour, which render it in some- 
measure the Capital of Europe, had that feudal Law existed 

For my own part, in meditating on the causes which render 
a City illustrious, and which make it the Centre of Nations, I 
perceive that it is not the magnificence of the public monu- 
ments, nor the privileges granted to commerce, nor the mild 


uess of climate, nor even the fecundity of soil, but the felicity 
which the more amiable portion of the human species there en- 
joys. There are upon the Globe Cities more happily situated 
than Paris, and which are far less renowned and far less popu- 
lous. Naples is in a delicious climate ; modern Rome is a re- 
pository of august monuments ; Constantinople is on the limits 
of three parts of the World, Europe, Asia and Africa ; other 
Cities, such as the Capitals of Peru and Mexico, are situated 
on the brink of the vast Ocean, in a soil teeming with gold, 
with silver and precious stones, and under a temperate sky 
which knows neither the burning heat of Summer nor the se- 
verity of Winter : others, such as Ceylon, Amboyna, Java, are 
in fortunate islands, amidst forests of cinnamon trees, of cloves 
and nutmegs. Nevertheless no one of those Cities is once to 
be compared with Paris, because in them the women are re- 
duced to a civil or moral slavery. There are even in France 
Cities which present advantages superior to those of her Capi- 
tal, from being under a climate more genial, or nearer the cen- 
tre of the kingdom to become the seat of Government, or on 
the shore of the sea to maintain a communication with all Na- 
tions. Rouen, for example, the capital of the Pais de Caux, a 
very considerable sea-port so far back as the times of Julius 
Cesar, ought, from the fertility of the adjacent country, from 
the industry of it's inhabitants, and from it's situation on the 
Seine near it's influx into the Ocean, to have risen to the same 
degree of power as the Capital of England, which by it's Dukes 
it once subdued. But if London herself is become the rival 
of Paris, it is undoubtedly from the same causes. Paris owes 
it's flourishing condition to that which it confers on it's female 
inhabitants. Wherever women are happy, there you behold 
taste, elegance, commerce, and liberty abounding. The miser- 
able of all countries, who every where reckon on their sensi- 
bility, carry thither their arts, their industry and their hopes. 
Human beings flock thither, because there tyrants dare not to 
appear. The most renowned cities of antiquity are those in 
which women were held in highest consideration ; such was 
Athens among the Greeks ; such was a great part of Greece, 
where they reigned by the Empire of the Graces, of Innocence, 
and of Love, and which has left a remembrance of itself so de* 


licious, the blest Arcadia. Warlike Rome herself owed to 
them, from the privileges which she granted them, the greatest 
part of her power over barbarous nations who tyrannized over 
their women. It is easy to subdue enemies when we have their 
female companions for friends. Ovid observes that Venus had 
more temples at Rome than in any other place of the world. If 
to this sex we refer all those who bore the various appellations 
of Fortune, of Juno, of Vesta, of Cijbele, of Minerva, of Diana, 
of Ceres, of Proserpine, of Muses, of Nymphs, of Flora, See. 
we shall find that the Goddesses were there held in still higher 
honour than the Gods. At Paris, the female saints are in higher 
estimation than the male. That capital of France owes it's pre- 
rogatives over all the other cities of the kingdom, and it's in- 
fluence over Europe, to the elegance of the arts, to the variety 
of the modes and to the politeness of manners which result 
from the empire of the women. Women are at Paris the law- 
givers of the moral code, which is much more powerful than 
the legal. If they are still oppressed there by the laws which 
subject them to their husbands and to their grown children, 
they are still protected by manners, which reserve to them in 
all places the post of honour, as invested with a natural magis- 
tracy which renders them through the whole course of our life 
the legislatrixes of our tastes, of our usages, and even of our 
opinions. They are, from our infancy, our first Apostles : from 
them we learn, when infants, to make with the same hand the 
sign of the cross, and a reverence to the ladies ; to honour at 
once the altar and their sex, as if they sought in our young 
hearts a protection to be afforded in riper years, and to inspire 
us on their bosom with religious and tender affections which are 
in a future period to serve as a safe-guard against the barba- 
rism of our institutions. The laws ought therefore to come 
with manners to the support of their weakness, by inviting them 
all over France to an equal participation of our fortunes and of 
our rights, as Nature has called them to be partakers of our 
pleasures and our pains. 

The National Assembly ought farther to devote attention to 
the establishment of the same laws all over the kingdom, as well 
as the same weights and measures, for the purpose of settling 
among citizens the union of sentiment and conduct so necessary 
to public prosperity. 


I hey will likewise effect a reform in the code of Criminal 
Justice, which presents not fewer abuses than the Civil Code. 
The humanity of our magistrates, supported by the will of the 
Nation and the sanction of Majesty, will penetrate into the in- 
tricate labyrinth of law, already unravelled by the Servans and 
the Dupatys, in order to strip vice of it's refuges, and to pre- 
vent innocence from going astray. In directing their own con- 
duct they will never lose sight of that law which Nature has 
inscribed, not on columns of marble or tablets of brass ; not on 
parchments in Egyptian, Hebrew or Latin characters ; but 
which she has impressed with characters of feeling, that language 
of all ages, on the conscience of every man, to be there the 
eternal basis of the justice and the felicity of Human Society : 
" Do not to another what you would not have done to yourself." 
The consequence will be that rewards must become common 
and personal to all Frenchmen, for the same virtues, as punish- 
ment for the same vices. These are the only means of destroy- 
ing the prejudice which confers honour on the whole posterity 
of a family, in compliment to the glory of one of it's members, 
or which disgraces it for the crime of an individual. At the 
same time all chastisements which are infamous and cruel 
ought to be abolished. Nay it appears to me reasonable to 
substitute, without corporal stigma, after the example of the 
Romans, the punishment of exile out of the kingdom, in place 
of that of perpetual imprisonment and of the galleys. A man, 
after having committed a bad action in his own country, where 
he has been tempted by indigence, seduced by example, or 
hurried on by passion, frequently reforms himself in a foreign 
country where lie is more happy, and especially where he is 
unknown. Frequently, on the contrary, his depravation is 
completed, abandoned to himself in a prison, or blasted in the 
society of citizens by public opinion, which pursues him lor 
ever even in his children. The punishment of death Ought 
likewise to be very rarely inflicted ; it should take place only 
in cases of premeditated assassination, as in the law oi Talio 
among the Hebrews. The punishment of death has been abo- 
lished in Russia in every case, high-treason excepted, and 
crimes arc much rarer in that country than formerly, when this 
punishment was very common. We ought to imitate the hu- 


manity of the English, who send most of their convicts to new- 
ly discovered countries. It would likewise be advisable to adopt 
their practice of decision by the judgment of Peers and the ver- 
dict of Juries. This last mode of determination may serve equal- 
ly to ascertain the performance of worthy actions in the view 
of rewarding them, and the commission of crimes in order to 
punish them. It is not just that the laws should always be in- 
flicting punishment, and never bestowing rewards ; that a maw 
should be sent to the galleys or to a dungeon for having attack- 
ed the fortune or the life of a fellow-citizen, and receive no 
mark of public favour for having preserved peace in his neigh- 
bourhood, and administered consolation to the afflicted. Our 
code of justice employs but one sword ; it knows only to smite : 
it's balance serves only to weigh offences, but never virtues. It 
is to be desired therefore that our tribunals should have it in 
their power to decree recompenses as well as punishments, and 
to erect altars as well as scaffolds. Then the stones of our 
cross-streets continually covered with the the awards of brand- 
ing or of death, will cease to be, as at Genoa, stones of infamy ; 
they will acquire to themselves honour by becoming the records 
of virtue. The avenues into our cities, instead of terrifying 
travellers by exhibiting gibbets, will invite them there to seek 
an asylum by triumphal arches reared, as in China, to the me- 
mory of meritorious citizens. 

Such are the principal abuses which in my opinion call for re- 
formation. I noAv proceed to make some reflections on territo- 
rial impost which must supply the place of tallage, towards dis- 
charging the debts of the State, and which ought to be paid by 
every landed proprietor without exception. 

It appears to me that in order to equalize a territorial tax on 
persons, it ought to be laid equally on fortunes ; that is to say, 
it ought to increase in proportion to the extent of each landed 
property '• thus the quantity of land necessary to the maintenance 
of a family being determined, that quantity should pay more in 
proportion as it might increase in the hands of each proprietor. 
The Romans, in the earlier ages of their Republic, limited to 
seven acres the portion of land necessary to the subsistence of 
one family. As we are not so temperate as the ancient Romans ; 
as our climate, colder than that of Italy, requires larger sup- 


plies ; as our soil is less fertile ; as we pay tithes and various 
other imposts unknown to them ; and as they participated, on 
the contrary, in the tributes imposed on conquered Nations, to 
the relief of the Roman People themselves, we may in France 
fix at twenty acres, the quantity of land necessary to support one 
family. This being laid down, and the acre being assessed to 
a territorial impost, to be paid in produce not in money, each 
property exceeding twenty acres could bear a light tax which 
might be denominated the surplus-rate. This rate ought to be 
paid by those who may possess two properties consisting of 
twenty acres each ; it should be doubled on those who have 
three, quadrupled on those who have four, and so on. Thus 
while individual properties advanced in arithmetical progression, 
1, 2, 3, 4, the surplus rate would increase in a geometrical ratio, 
t, 4, 8, &c. so that it would be equal, for a possession of a 
thousand acres, to the territorial impost on those same thousand 
acres ; it should be double on one of two thousand, quadruple 
on one of three thousand ; octuple on one of four thousand. 

This surplus-rate should increase with the extent of proper- 
ties, as the tariff of diamonds and crystals, luxuries besides far 
less dangerous than that of overgrown land possessions which 
infallibly involve the ruin of a State, as has been observed by 
Plutarch and Pliny, and applied to Africa, Greece, and the Ro- 
man Empire. To these instances may be added, in the same 
ages, Sicily and part of Asia, and, in modern times, Poland, 
Spain, and Italy. It is to be presumed therefore that this sur- 
plus-rate would in France give a check to the accumulation of 
vast territorial property, much better than the prohibitoiy laws 
promulgated to no purpose at Rome under the Emperors, who 
fixed the extent of the greatest individual landed property at 500 
acres. It is always easy to infringe a prohibitory law, when 
the prohibition does not pursue the transgression of it close on 
the heels. Cupidity, like the other passions, resembles a car- 
riage going down hill ; unless you lock the wheel before you 
reach the declivity, it will not be possible to stop it half way 

The surplus-rate proposed seems to me in every view found- 
ed in justice ; for if twenty acres belonging to one family, pay 
one half less than twenty acres of the thousand which might fall 


into the hands of a single proprietor, on the other hand, these 
twenty acres of the small proprietor, produce in proportion a 
much greater increase in provisions and men. An estate of a 
thousand acres, under a single proprietor, contains, one year 
with another, a full third in fallow, and is cultivated by at most 
ten families of domestics of five persons each, that is fifty per- 
sons in all, including wives and children ; whereas these thou- 
sand acres, parcelled out among fifty proprietors of twenty acres 
each, would be cultivated throughout, and maintain fifty free and 
industrious families, consisting of two hundred and fifty citizens. 
Now, abundance of provisions and of men, especially of free 
men, is the first wealth of Nations. 

There would be this result from the impost of surplus territo- 
rial rate, that great proprietors paying more, and producing less, 
would become rarer, and that small proprietors paying less and 
producing more would become more common. The former 
would be less eagerly coveted by the rich, especially when strip- 
ped of right to the game, and other privileges injurious to agri- 
culture ; and the latter would be a much more desirable object 
to tradesmen of moderate fortune, when no longer oppressed and 
stigmatized by high-road service, militia-draughts and tallage : 
thus the surplus-rate would become a bulwark against the ex- 
treme of opulence and indigence, which are the two sources of 
national vice. It might be extended to all great properties in 
employments, in houses, and in money, without touching how- 
ever any one of the great properties already existing, even such 
as are territorial. These Wishes which I form for the public 
felicity, respect futurity only, and ought not to occasion present 
distress to any individual great proprietor. 

Having thrown out these hints on the subject of landed pro- 
perty, I proceed to make a few observations on corn, the most 
important production of land, and which is from it's nature a 
nal property. The freedom of commerce in grain, has pro- 
.1 a variety of treatises on both sides of the question : but 
as, from the effect of our ambitious education, no question is 
discussed but with a view to shine, it has happened that this 
.'inong the rest, simple as it is, has been rendered extrcrnely 
problematical, because the more that a wit I ' ruth, the 

more he perplexes it. 


It is certain that there is no family tolerably at it's ease, but 
what has a provision of money secured, whereon to live at least 
one year : it is very strange that the great family of the State 
should not have it's provision of corn laid up to subsist on for 
at least that space of time. For want of magazines of grain, the 
liberty of commerce in that article has frequently exhausted the 
Kingdom of it. 

Popular commotions scarcely ever have any other source but 
dearth of corn. Our enemies, both domestic and foreign, seize 
the moment when the ports are open for exportation, and earn 7 
off all that is to be sold, at whatever price, in the full assurance 
that within three months they will be able to re-sell it to us with 
an advance of a hundred per cent, thus we resemble the Sa- 
vages who sell their bed of a morning, and are obliged to re- 
purchase it at night. It is necessary therefore that the State, 
before the exportation of grain is permitted, should have laid up 
a provision for at least one year over and above the crop on the 
ground ; and for this purpose, it ought to have public magazines. 
In order to decide this question, there is no need of ministerial 
memoir or of academical dissertation, common sense is suffi- 
cient. If example is of any weight, look at Geneva, Switzer- 
land, and Holland, whose inhabitants, with a soil unproductive 
or insufficient, live in assured abundance, by means of their pub- 
lic magazines ; whereas the peasants frequently want bread in 
Poland and Sicily, the granaries of all Europe. Monopolies, 
we are told, will be the consequence of having magazines. Did 
they depend on private individuals, the objection would be of 
some weight : private magazines are the immediate cause of 
public scarcity : but nothing of this sort is to be apprehended, if 
the granaries belong to the Nation, the administration of diem 
be vested in the Provincial Assemblies. The Provincial As- 
semblies could in truth reserve them entirely for the consump- 
tion of their respective provinces, which would enjoy plenty 
while their neighbours might be in want ; but this never can be 
the case under the inspection and correspondence of the Na- 
tional Assembly, who, informed of the super-abundance of grain 
in one Canton, and it's scarcity in another, would procure the 
interposition of Royal Authority towards maintaining thr< 
the whole Kingdom the equilibrium of the first-rate support of 

Vol. III. Uu 


human life. This is one reason among a thousand, to evince 
the necessity of that Assembly's permanency, and of the period- 
ical change of it's members. 

Our political Treatises, to gratify the leaders of Administra- 
tion, are much employed in devising the means of increasing the 
Wealth of Nations. It seems that a State can never have too 
much wine, too much corn, too much cattle, and especially too 
much money, for to this all the rest ultimately point. But how 
comes it about that we have always a superfluity of that first 
Wealth of Empires, I mean the human species, seeing almost 
all over Europe it is so wretched, and it's cities swarming with 
inhabitants which they know not how to dispose of? A shep- 
herd does not feel himself encumbered with the number of his 
sheep ; he does not expose at the corner of his village the little 
lamb newly dropped from the mother ; but fathers and mothers 
every day abandon their new-born infants in the squares of our 
Cities and at the gates of our Hospitals. The number of Found- 
lings in Paris amounts yearly to from five to six thousand, a full 
third of those who are born there. In this City so opulent and 
so indigent, the most miserable refuse is of some value ; we see 
persons picking up at the corner of the streets, bones, broken 
bottles, ashes, old rags ; an old cat diere has her price, were it 
but for her skin ; but no one there sets any value on a misera- 
ble human being. That inhabitant of the fortunate kingdom of 
France, that child of GOD and of the Church, that King of Na- 
ture goes about soliciting from door to door the indulgence 
granted to the house-dog, that of demanding with a lamentable 
voice, from a being of his own species, of his own nation and of 
his own religion, a morsel of bread, whieh is frequently refused. 
It is much worse at the gate of a Nobleman's hotel, where a 
Swiss will not so much as let him shew himself. It is worse 
still in his garret, from which he is driven by famine, when 
shame, whose bite is keener than the tooth of a dog, and more 
repulsive than a Swiss, forbids him to quit it. 

But beggary itself is no longer the resource of indigence, for 
they put mendicants in prison. It is therefore my wish, in or- 
der to meet the demands of the People, that every man in health 
out of employment, should have the right of demanding it of 
the assembly of his Village or of his District, Should it have 


none to give him, his demand will be transmitted to the Assem- 
bly of the Ctiy with which it is connected ; this last, supposing 
the case equal, will carry it to the Provincial Assembly, which 
will take care to transmit it to the National Assembly, should it 
be in the same state of impotency. 

The National Assembly would thus have in the last resort 
the state of all the indigent families in the Kingdom, as it would 
have that of all their wants, and of their resources : it would 
accordingly employ it's good offices with the King for the estab- 
lishment of his indigent families in the Provinces where labour- 
ers might be wanted, or in our colonies and in countries re- 
cently discovered, under a Government similar to that of the 
future Constitution, in order always to unite those Frenchmen 
to their Country, and to extend over the whole Earth the po- 
pulation, the power, and the felicity of their parent land. These 
daily provisions are additional reasons to evince the necessity 
of rendering the National Assembly permanent. 

Thus Brittany and Bourdeaux with their heaths ; Normandy 
with it's muds which the Sea inundates and leaves twice every 
day ; Rochelle and Rochefort with their stagnant marshes ; Pro- 
vence with it's rocks and it's plains of flint ; Corsica with it's 
mountains and woods, the American Islands with their soli- 
tudes, and so many other lands conveyed by grant from the 
Crown, such as those of Corsica, given away in great lots of 
ten thousand acres at a stroke, and which remain uncultivated 
in the hands of their great moneyless proprietors, would lincl 
themselves raised into value by being parcelled out into small 
allotments, and would furnish openings without number for the 
overflowings of our hospitals, especially for those of the Found- 
ling Hospital. Indigence, cut close by the root, would cease to 
produce mendicity, theft and prostitution, which are the natu- 
ral fruits of it. As to persons poor and infirm, they would be 
relieved at their own home, or in houses of mercy, from the 
funds raised and administered by the Assemblies of each dis- 
trict ; to this purpose might be employed the revenues of "hos- 
pitals, those vast focuses of misery and epidemic disease. Be 

i, as there would be no longer any healthy poor in the It 
dom, the number of sick poor would be greatly reduced. 


Farther, by assigning to the petitions of the indigent, a periori 
for transmission from Assembly to Assembly, it was not my in- 
tention to clap fetters on their liberty ; but I wished to suggest 
assured means of relief not only to them, but to the villages, to 
the cities, to the provinces, and to the State itself. If indivi- 
duals sometimes have need of work, whole societies have fre- 
quently need of workmen. Michael Montaigne expressed a 
wish to have an Advertising Office established at Paris, to 
which persons in want, or superabounding, might mutually ap- 
ply for information, whatever the case might be. His idea has 
been partly executed by means of hand-bills and newspapers ; 
but these are hardly employed to any objects but those of luxu- 
rv, such as furniture, coaches, horses, houses, lands, but very 
rarely to advertise for men. The establishment should extend 
to the demands of the plains, of the cities, of the provinces, and 
of the State itself. Now a permanent National Assembly alone 
is capable of embracing at once all public and private necessities. 
It is besides an act of justice ; for if the State has a right to ex- 
act from the People militia service, that of the royal navy and of 
the high-ways in cases of urgent pressure, the People have like- 
wise, under the pressure of want, a right to demand of the 
State the means of subsistence. Add to this, that every French- 
man has a right to address himself directly to the National As- 
sembly ; and if he chooses to pursue his fortunes out of the 
kingdom, he should be at perfect liberty to quit it, as every 
stranger ought to have that of coming into it and of settling, 
with the free exercise of his religion, in order to fix among us, 
by the equity of our laws, the men whom we attract by the ur- 
banity of our manners. 

Confidence being restored between the three orders, the in- 
terests of the two first harmonized with those of the People, and 
balanced by that of the King ; the Rural, Municipal, Provin- 
cial, and National Assemblies, rendered permanent in their to- 
tality, periodical in their members, and harmonious in their de- 
liberations ; Agriculture delivered from all it's shackles, cap- 
tainries, gabels, militia-draughts ; individual liberty made sure 
to every Citizen in his fortune, his person, and his conscience ; 
slavery abolished in the Colonies and on Mount Jura ; the code 
of civil and criminal justice reformed ; the territorial impost 


assessed proportionably to the extent of landed property, and to 
the exigencies of the State and of the National Debt ; the means 
of subsistence multiplied, and secured to the People by the bul- 
warks opposed to the excessive accumulation of property : there 
will be reared, with respect to all those objects, a Constitution 
sanctioned by the King, the execution of which will be commit- 
ted to the proper tribunals, to be henceforward considered as 
the national Code of Law. 

The Assembly has no occasion to make an attempt to com- 
prise, in this Constitution, every possible case ; they are innu- 
merable, and there are some which it would be melancholy to 
foresee, and dangerous to publish. As the Assembly ought to 
be permanent, it will make provision for them as they happen to 
arise. It will have trouble sufficient in rectifying the past, and 
regulating the present, without taking fruitless pains in enacting 
laws for an unknown futurity. 

Whatever wisdom may preside over the digesting of this 
Code, it is not to be imagined that it's laws are to possess im- 
mutability* Nothing is immutable, the Laus of Nature ex<_pt- 
ed, because their Author alone, from his infinite wisdom, knows 
the exigencies of all beings at all times : the legislators of Na- 
tions on the contrary being but men, scarcely know the exigen- 
cies of the moment, and can have no foresight of those which 
futurity is preparing for them. 

Political laws therefore ought to be variable, because they in- 
terest families onlv, bodies of men, countries which are them- 
selves subject to change : and the Laws of Nature must be per- 
manent because they are the laws of man, and of the human 
species, whose rights are invariable. Now I do not know one 
State in Europe but what has rendered the political laws per- 
manent, and those of Nature so variable, that scarcely at the pre- 
sent day is it possible to perceive the traces of them. 

The hereditary right of Nobility, for example, which was 
not originally transmissive, is a political law rendered perma- 
nent all over Europe : it ought nevertheless to vary according 
to the exigencies of States ; for it must be foreseen that noble 
families will multiply themselves more than others, because 
they have greater credit, and consequently more ample means 
'ibsisting ; and because families oi opulent tradesmen will 


have a constant tendency to incorporate with them, by obtaining 
letters of nobility ; so that the number of persons who do nothing 
being continually on the increase, and that of the laborious con- 
tinually diminishing, the State, at the expiration of some ages, 
may feel itself enfeebled by it's own Constitution. 

This in fact has actually taken place in Spain and other coun- 
tries. Spain has been weakened neither by wars nor by emi- 
grations to America, as so many politicians have alleged ; but 
on the contrary by peace, and the excessive multiplication of 
noble families which has resulted from it. The long and bloody 
wars of the League cut off great numbers of men of family in 
France ; but France, so far from being weakened, increased in 
population and riches up to the time of Louis XIV. The emi- 
grations from England, a country much smaller than Spain, 
have formed in America colonies much more flourishing and 
more populous than the Spanish ; and so far from dimin- 
ishing the strength of England, they would have increased it, 
had they been more closely united to the Mother-country, from 
which they separated merely in consequence of their strength. 

It is because in England the interests of the Nobility are 
linked to those of the People, and because, like them, they ap- 
ply to Agriculture, to commercial Navigation, and Trade. Fi- 
nally, several States in Italy which, as Genoa, Venice, Naples ; 
and in Sicily, Sec. have had neither wars to support nor colonies 
to supply, are reduced to a state of weakness which is constantly 
increasing, without the possibility of ascribing it to any other 
cause but the inheritance of Nobility, and fresh patents which 
are continually multiplying the class of idle Noblemen, at the 
expense of the laborious classes of the People. 

If the ancient Episcopal Law, which in Europe enjoined tes- 
tators to leave by Will, under pain of having their testaments 
declared null and void, bequests in favour of the Church, with 
deprivation of Christian burial to those who died intestate, had 
not been abrogated, as well as the permission to the mortmain 
gentry to acquire landed property, it is undoubtedly certain that 
all our lands would have been long ago at the command of the 
Clergy, as all our dignities are at the disposal of the Nobility. 
It is farther certain, that if the custom which permits gentlemen 
■•! finance to job in the Public 1 '•, all our 


specie will find it's way into the pocket of brokers. The cas. 
is the same with privileged companies of every kind. Thus a 
Nation may, merely by the permanency of laws and customs, 
which perhaps formerly contributed to it's prosperity, find itself 
stripped at length of it's honour, of it's lands, of it's com- 
merce, and of it's liberty. 

A Nation, on the contrary, by rendering variable, for the in- 
terest of certain bodies of men, the Laws of Nature which ought 
to be permanent, abolishes at the long-run most of the rights 
of Man : sometimes they are those of marriage, sometimes 
those of personal liberty, as on Mount Jura, and in our Colo- 
nies, See. 

It must therefore be a fundamental law of our future Con- 
stitution, that the Laws of Nature alone shall be permanent, 
and that every political Law may be changed and amended by 
the National Assembly as often as the good of the Nation may 
require, as the happiness of a Nation is itself a consequence of 
that Law of Nature which she constantly proposes to herself, 
in the variable harmony of her works, the felicity of all man- 

But as the Laws of Nature themselves disappear in societies, 
from the prejudices merely which are instilled into infancy, to 
such a degree that men come in time to believe what is natural 
to them is foreign, and what is foreign natural, it is necessary to 
rest the basis of our future Constitution, on a national education, 
in order that, should reason fail, it may become agreeable to our 
posterity at least by the allurement of habit. 


PREVIOUS to the establishment of a school for the citi- 
zens at large, there must be formed a school for teachers. It 
fills me with astonishment to think that the acquisition of every 
art requires the serving of an apprenticeship, the most difficult 
oi' all excepted, the art of forming men. Nor is this all. The 
occupation of instructing youth is usually the resource of per- 
sons who possess no particular talent. The National Assembly- 
ought to pay special attention to so necessary an establishment.. 


They will make choice of men proper to execute the office of 
instructors, not from among doctors and caballers, as the custom 
has been, but among respectable fathers of families who may- 
have themselves educated their own children properly. I do 
not mean such as have made their young people scholars and 
wits, but those who have rendered them pious, modest, ingenu- 
ous, gentle, obliging and happy, that is, who have left them 
nearly such as Nature had formed them. There will be no oc- 
casion, in order to fill those places, either for diplomas of A. M. 
or D. D., but the production of beautiful and well-disposed 
children ; and as we form a judgment of the workman from his 
work, that man should be deemed capable of instructing the fa- 
milies of the State, who has educated his own family wisely 
and well. 

Those instructors ought to enjoy personal Nobility, in conside- 
ration of the dignity of their functions. They must be under 
the immediate inspection of the National Assembly, and have 
under their superintendance all the masters of sciences, lan- 
guages, arts and exercises. They must be spread over the prin- 
cipal subdivisions of Paris, and through all the Cities of the 
Kingdom, to establish National Schools in them ; and not even 
a village schoolmaster should be permitted to teach but by their 

They will apply themselves, first of all, to the reformation of 
the whole system of our gothic and barbarous education, of the 
age of Charlemagne. It is unnecessary to say that they will ban- 
ish from it languor, sadness, tears, corporal chastisements ; that 
they will train up young ones to love and not to fear ; and make 
Citizens of them, not Slaves. Being themselves fathers of hap- 
py children, Nature must have taught them much more than 
they could learn from me, a useless bachelor : but as they are 
Frenchmen, they ought to be no less on their guard against the 
methods which exalt the soul too high, than against those which 
degrade it. 

They will therefore banish emulation from their schools. 
Emulation, we are told, is a stimulant : for this reason precisely 
it ought to be reprobated. Men without art and without arti- 
fice, leave strong spiceries to those whose taste is weakened ; 
present not to the children of your Country any aliments but 


such as are gentle and simple like themselves and like you. The 
fever must not be thrown into their blood in order to make it 
circulate : permit it to flow in it's natural course ; Nature has 
made sufficient provision to this effect at an age of such restless- 
ness and activity. The disquietude of adolescence, the passions 
of youth, the anxieties of manhood, will one day excite an in- 
flammation but too violent to admit of being cooled by all your 

Emulation is a stimulant of a singular species. We do not 
serve ourselves of it ; but it moves and directs us at pleasure. 
While we propose to subdue a rival, emulation makes a con- 
quest of us. Like the man who bridled and mounted the horse 
at his own request, to avenge him of the stag, once in the sad- 
dle on our mind, it forces us to go where we have no occasion, 
and to run after every one who goes faster than ourselves. It 
fills the whole career of life with solicitude, uneasiness and vain 
desires, and when old-age has slackened all our movements, it 
continues to stimulate us by unprofitable regret. 

Post eqvitem sedet atra extra. 

Gloomy cure mounts behind the horseman. 

Had I any occasion in infancy to surpass my companions in 
drinking, in eating, in walking, in order to find pleasure in these ? 
Wherefore should it be necessary for me to learn to outstrip 
them in my studies, in order to acquire a relish for learning ? 
Have I not acquired the faculty of speaking and of reasoning 
without emulation ? Are not the functions of the soul as natural 
and as agreeable as those of the body ? If they sadden our chil- 
dren, it is the fault of our mode of education, and not that of 
science. It is not from want of appetite on their part. Behold 
what imitators they are of every thing which they see done, and 
of every thing which they hear said ? Do you wish then to at- 
tract children to your exercises ? Act as Nature does in recom- 
mending hers : draw them with cords of love, and they will run 
without a spur. 

Emulation is the cause of most of the ills of human life. It 

is the root of ambition ; for emulation produces fh- desire of 

being the first; and the desire of being the first is the essence 

nbition, which ramifies itself, conformably to positions and 

Vol. III. X x 


characters, into negative and positive ambitions, from which 
issue almost all the miseries of society. 

Positive ambition generates the love of applause, of personal 
and exclusive prerogatives for a man's self or for his corps, of 
immense property in dignities, in lands and in employments; in 
a word it produces avarice, that calm ambition of gold, in which 
all the ambitious finish their course. But avarice alone drags 
in it's train an infinite number of evils, by depriving multitudes 
of other citizens of the means of subsistence, and produces, by 
a necessary re-action, robberies, prostitutions, quackery, super- 

Negative ambition generates in it's turn jealousy, evil-speak- 
ing, calumnies, quarrels, litigation, duels, intolerance. Of all 
these particular ambitions a national ambition is composed, which 
manifests itself in a People by the love of conquest, and in 
their Prince by the love of despotism : from national ambition 
flow imposts, slavery, tyrannies and war, a sufficient scourge of 
itself for die human race. 

I was long under the conviction that ambition must be natu- 
ral to man ; but now I consider it as a simple result from our 
education. We are involved so early in the prejudices of so 
many whose interest is concerned to communicate them to us, 
that it becomes extremely difficult to distinguish through the 
rest of life, what is natural to us and what artificial. In order 
to form a judgment of the institutions of our societies, we must 
withdraw to a distance from them ; but to form a judgment of 
the sentiments of our own heart, we must retire into it. As to 
myself, who have been long driven back into myself by the pub- 
lic manners, and who withdraw myself more and more from the 
world by my habits, it seems to me that man has no natural 
self-impulse either to raise himself above his fellows, or to sink 
below them, but to live with them as their equal. This senti- 
ment is common to ail animals the individuals and species of 
which have not reduced each other to subjection ; for a more 
powerful reason it ought to be universal among men, who stand 
in need of mutual assistance. The love of ambition, therefore, 
is more natural to the human heart than the love of servitude. 
The love of equality is the medium point between these two 
extremes, like virtue from which it does not differ : it is the 


universal justice : it is between two contraries, like the harmony 
which governs the world. It is that which Confucius calls " the 
M golden mean," which he considers as the cause of all that is 
good, and which he denominates by way of excellence, " the 
" virtue of the heart." He makes the principle of it to consist 
in piety, that is in the love of all men in general. He frequent- 
ly recommends in his writings, " not to make another suffer 
" what you yourself would be loth to suffer." On this natural 
basis it is that he has reared the immovable fabrick of China, 
the most ancient Empire in the universe. In China children 
and young people are not stimulated to surpass each other. 
They comprehend not, says the philosopher La Barbinais, either 
our theses or our college disputations. They simply undergo 
an examination on the subject of morals, before Commissioners 
appointed by the Court. These Commissioners select such of 
them as discover the greatest capacity without the least regard 
to their condition, to raise them, through successive degrees, to 
the rank of Mandarin, from which a man may rise to the of- 
fice of prime Minister of State. 

The emulation with which we inspire our children, it I may 
venture to speak out, is a fortified ambition ; for the ambitious 
man wishes at most to get up to the first place ; but the emu- 
lous wishes besides to raise himself at the expense of a rival. It 
is not sufficient for him to get to the summit of the mountain ; 
he must have the farther satisfaction of beholding all his com- 
petitors tumbling down. Emulation is a cruel deity, who, un- 
satisfied with a temple and incense, must have victims likewise. 
It is remarkable that the emulation infused into infant minds, 
produces a more pernicious effect in us Frenchmen, and ren- 
ders us more vain than any other Nation of Europe. Many 
reasons for this are to be found in our manners ; but without 
going farther than our education, I discover a particular cause 
of the vain-glorious ambition of our children, in that of our pro- 
fessors. In Switzerland, in Holland, in England, in German}-, 
in Italy, in Russia, and I believe in all the Universities of Eu- 
rope, professorships lead to Magistracies, to the rank ot Aulic- 
councellor, or to other employments which connect them with 
administration of the State : this was the case formerly 
among ourselves, before every thing came to be bought and 



sold. Those Professors in other Countries therefore direc: 
the attention of thi-ir pupils, in part, toward the object which 
they themselves have in view, that is toward public affairs, 
our French regents, obliged to circumscribe all their ambition 
within the precincts of a College, can gratify it only by com- 
municating it to the youth committed to their charge, without 
foreseeing the consequences to the community. They estab- 
lish among them Empires in miniature, the crowns and digni- 
ties of which they distribute, but together with them the jea- 
lousies and hatred which every where accompany emulation. 
They have nevertheless examples in abundance of it's fatal ef- 
fects both in ancient and modern Nations. In return for some 
talents to how many vices does it give birth ! Besides, if emu- 
lation has raised up some great men in certain Republics, it was 
because the Citizen could there aspire at every thing. But 
among us, with whom mere merit no longer leads to any thing, 
with whom it is impossible to rise to the smallest posts without 
money, to great situations without birth, and to no one what- 
ever without intrigue, the crowd of ambitious pretenders is 
wholly occupied in levelling all who attempt to rise. A travel- 
ler, a man of superior merit, said to me some time ago : " I this 
" day find sunk into contempt the men whom I left here, last 
" -sear, in full possession of the highest degree of public esteem. 
u If they deserved it not, why did they obtain it? And where- 
M fore have they lost it, if it is their due ? There is in France an 
" agio of reputation which I never saw in any other country." 
The emulation of children is with us the original cause of the 
inconstancy of men : as it inspires, with it's crosses, it's medals, 
it's books, it's prizes, it's theses, it's competitions, into each one 
in particular, " Be foremost," it trains them to want of subordi- 
nation to their superiors, to jealousy of their equals, and to con- 
tempt of their inferiors. But as extremes closely approximate, 
this ambitious education is at the same time servile to the last 
degree. As it operates only by the love of applause or the 
dread of censure, it places men all their life long at the discre- 
tion of flatterers, who for the most part understand the art of 
maligning fully as well as that of praising. The suffrages of 
others, which they are eager to captivate, recaptivate them in 
their turn with such foice, that it is sufficient for them to be 


circled with detractors of the most evident truth, to ensure their 
rejection of it ; or with puffers of the most absurd opinion in 
order to their at length admitting it. Their own judgment 
bending under the load of this tyranny, the yoke of which they 
have been accustomed to bear from their youth upward, their 
conscience forms only the versatile opinion of another, which 
becomes to them the only standard of good and evil. 

Our education disposes us no less to obstinacy than to incon- 
stancy. It is from the vanity and the weakness which it inspires, 
that the spirit of party has so much influence, and that it is suf- 
ficient for the ambitious man to say to such of his partisans as 
might be hesitating whether they should support his opinions, 
" You have no courage," to bring them back instantly to his 
standard. There is notwithstanding no great courage but much 
weakness in suffering ones-self to be carried along by the pas- 
sions of a man, of his corps, or even of his country. It is because 
that on one hand we have not the boldness to resist, and on the 
other are surrounded with powers which sustain us, that a man 
believes himself strong, Were he of the opposite party, he 
would be of the contrary opinion from the same weakness. When 
I see two men engaged in an eager dispute, I frequently say to 
myself: Each of these gentlemen would maintain an opposite 
opinion, had he been born a hundred leagues hence. What do 
I say ? It is sufficient to have the breadth of a single sheet in- 
tervening to be for ever the sworn enemy of an opinion, of 
which a man would have been the most zealous partisan, if he 
had been educated in the opposite house. Change a man's edu- 
cation, and you change his manner of life, his dress, his philoso- 
phy, his morality, his religion, his patriotism, his every thing. 
The African will think like the European, and the European 
like the African : the Republican will hold the sentiments of 
the despot, and the despot those of the republican. In truth, it 
is a most humiliating consideration to man, and capable of with- 
drawing us from the investigation of truth, when we see that 
not only our acquired knowledge, but that our feelings, which 
have the appearance of being innate, depend almost entirely on 
our education. 

We are under the necessity therefore, if we love truth and 
fellow creatures, of coming back to the Laws of Nature, 


seeing those of society fill us with prejudices from our child- 
hood, and frequently render us enemies to each other. Now 
in order to dispose children this way, the spirit of moderation 
must be instilled into them. That spirit, which enthusiasts, 
fanatics, and the ambitious of every description consider as an 
infirmity, is the true courage ; for it alone dares to resist oppo- 
site parties. It is the royalty of the soul which, like that of 
Nature, holds the balance between extremes, and maintains the 
harmony of beings. Virtue's station is the middle ; Stat in me- 
dio Virtrts. 

Children must be trained then never to lose the sentiment of 
conscience, and to rest it upon that of Deity, which is no less 
natural to man. This sentiment will expand in them by simply 
reading the Gospel : thus instead of teaching them to prefer 
themselves to others, from an emulation which is to others and 
to them a perpetual source of vexation, they will be left at first 
to seek contentment in themselves, that retiring thither during 
the storms of discordant society, they may there at least find 
repose and peace. They will soon be instructed to prefer others 
to themselves, from the knowledge of their own wants, for which 
they are incapable of making provision alone. Hence will flow 
the love of their fathers, of their mothers, of their relations, of 
their friends, of their country, of all mankind, as well as the ex- 
ercise of all the virtues which constitute the happiness of socie- 
ty. They will be instructed in all the sciences which correspond 
to these principles. From their education accordingly will be 
retrenched a part of the years now devoted to the unprofitable 
study of the Latin language, which may be learnt by use, a 
shorter, a surer and a more agreeable method than that of 
our grammars ; with this may be combined the use of the 
Greek tongue, the study of which is by far too much neglected 
among us. 

The education of all Europe at this day bears upon these two 
dead languages, which are in no respect subservient to our ne- 
cessities. Nevertheless I cannot, for the honour of letters, re • 
frain from making one reflection in this place ; it is, that the 
glory of Empires rests on men of letters, and on them alone. 
If Greek and Latin are at this day universally studied ; if the 
whole of European education, from the age of Qiarlem 


downward, is founded on this study ; if we talk so frequently 
of Greece and Italy, and of their ancient inhabitants, it is be- 
cause those countries have produced a dozen of writers, such as 
Homer, Plato, Hippocrates ; Plutarch, Xenophon, Demosthenes, 
Cicero, Virgil, Horace, Ovid, Tacitus, Pliny, he. It is there- 
fore for the sake of a dozen men of genius of antiquity, or two 
dozen at most, that our universities are founded, so that if those 
men had never existed, we should have no public education, and 
no person in Europe would any more take the trouble to learn 
Greek and Latin, than to learn the Arabic and Tartar langua- 
ges. Greece and Rome have in truth produced many illustri- 
ous men of various descriptions : but the same thing is true of 
many other countries, China for instance, of whom no mention 
is made in Colleges, because we are unacquainted with the in- 
genious authors who may have celebrated them. Besides, the 
persons who have made us acquainted with the Greeks and Ro- 
mans, had no occasion either for their Great men, or for their 
cities, to leave us superb monuments ; their own genius sup- 
plied them. It was that of Homer which gave existence to the 
wanderings of Ulysses, and which created the Gods and the 
Heroes of the Iliad. That of Virgil, in order to reach us, and 
to descend to latest posterity, had occasion only for his shep- 
herds and shepherdesses. The banks of the little rills on which 
he reposes delight us more than those of the Ganges, and the 
labours of his bees interest us as deeply as the foundation of 
the Roman Empire. The others have in like manner their 
particular talents. Assuredly they well deserve, every one of 
them, to have a few years of early life devoted to the formation 
of an acquaintance with them, and many years of life to enjoy 
that acquaintance ; but they themselves had too much good 
sense not to disapprove, had they lived among us, of making an 
European education rest entirely on the study of their works. 
They themselves did not pass the whole prime of youth in learn- 
ing foreign languages, but in studying Nature, of which they 
have left us pictures so enchanting. A stranger having arrived 
at Prague, desired his landlord to procure him a plan of the 
City, in order he said to acquire a knowledge of it. " The plan 
" of Prague is at Vienna," replied the landlord, " we have no 
" need of it here ; we have the City." We may hold a similar 


language respecting the Works of the Ancients, even the most 
perfect of them : " We have no need of the Georgics ; we have 
" Nature." The Ancients have indeed left behind them much 
interesting information concerning the affairs and the men of 
their own times ; but we have compatriots of our own whom we 
are bound to illumine and to render more happy. 

If the sciences and letters exercise an influence on the pros- 
perity of a Nation, of which no doubt can be entertained, it 
would be perhaps proper for the Nation to elect the members 
of her Academies, as she does those of her other Assemblies. 
Illumination ought to be in common, as well as the other riches 
of the State. When Academies elect their own members, they 
degenerate into Aristocracies extremely injurious to the repub- 
lic of letters and science. As admission is to be obtained only 
bv paying court to their Chiefs, the candidate is obliged to tie 
himself up to their systems. Errors support themselves by the 
credit of Associations, whereas isolated truth finds no partisans. 
Thus it was that Universities opposed barriers so pertinaciously 
defended to the progress of the natural sciences, by maintaining 
the philosophv of Aristotle in the face of progressive illumina- 
tion. Kepler complains bitterly of the Colleges of his time. 
That restorer of astronomy had discovered and demonstrated 
that Comets are planetary bodies, and not simple meteors, as 
the Universities, after Aristotle, pretended. He tells us in one 
of his letters, that his books, which contained a truth so new, 
and so evident, were entirely disregarded, while those which con- 
tained contrary opinions were cried up and universally diffus- 
ed, from the credit which Universities had with the Booksellers, 
what would he have said of their influence over public opinion, 
if, like the Academies of our days, they had had all the jour- 
nals at their disposal ? Let us call to remembrance the persecu- 
tions which Galileo underwent from the corps of Theologians, 
for having demonstrated the motion of the Earth. Behold at 
this day in what a stupor letters and science are kept by the 
Academies of Italy. It would perhaps be proper that they 
should be assimilated with us to the National Assemblies ; in 
other words, that being themselves permanent, their members 
might be periodical, and that they might be elected or kept in 
office by the Nation, so long as they discharged the duties of 


ihcir station with propriety. At any rate, as the public schools 
would be under no control but that of the National Assembly, 
there could be no room for apprehension that the tyranny of an 
Aristocratical Government would be introduced into them. 

We should substitute then in the room of part of our gram- 
matical studies of antiquity, those of the sciences which bring 
us near unto God, and render us useful to our fellow men, such 
as the knowledge of the Globe, of it's climates, of it's vegeta- 
bles, of the different Nations which inhabit it, of the relations 
in which they stand to us by means of commerce, and above all 
the study of the new constitutional code, which ought to be a 
code of patriotism and of morality. 

To the exercises of the understanding, which are to form the 
heart and mind of children, must be joined those which 
strengthen the body, and qualify them for the service of their 
Country, such as swimming, running, the military evolutions in 
vise among the ancients, which we study so long in theory, and 
to so little purpose in practice. Every one will be instructed in 
an art congenial to his taste, that he may find in himself re- 
sources against the revolutions of fortune. 

The children will be brought up to a vegetable regimen, as 
being most natural to man. The Nations which subsist on ve- 
getable diet are of all men the handsomest, the most robust, the 
least exposed to diseases and violent passions, and who attain 
the greatest longevity. Such are in Europe a great proportion 
of the Swiss. Most of the peasantry, who are in all countries 
the healthiest and most vigorous part of the community, eat very 
little flesh. The Russians observe the season of Lent and other 
days of abstinence innumerable, from which even the soldiery is 
not exempted ; they are nevertheless capable of enduring every 
species and degree of fatigue. The Negroes, who in our Colo- 
;'.re doomed to labour so severe, live entirely on manioc, 
potatoes and maize. The Bramins of India, who frequently 
>eyond a century, eat nothing but vegetables. From the 
Pythagorean school it was that Epaminondas issued forth, a man 
so renowned for his virtues, Archytas celebrated for his skill in 
mechanics, Jlilo of Crotona for his strength, and Pythagoras 
himself, the finest man of his day, and beyond the power of con- 
tradiction the most enlightened, for he was the father of philo- 

Vol. III. Y y 


sophy among the Greeks. As vegetable diet has a necessary 
connexion with many virtues, and excludes no one, it must be 
of importance to accustom young people to it, seeing it's influ- 
ence is so considerable and so happy on beauty of person and 
tranquillity of soul. This regimen prolongs infancy, and of 
consequence the duration of human life. I have seen an instance 
of it in an English youth of fifteen, who had not the appearance 
of being so much as twelve. He was a most interesting figure, 
possessed of health the most vigorous, and of a disposition the 
most gentle : he performed the longest journeys on foot, and 
never lost temper whatever befel him. His father, whose name 
was Pigot, told me that he had brought him up entirely under 
the Pythagoric regimen, the good effects of which he had learn- 
ed by his own experience. He had formed the project of em- 
ploying part of his fortune, which was considerable, in the estab- 
lishment, in some part of British America, of a Society of Py- 
thagoreans, who should employ themselves in training, under the 
same regimen, the children of the American colonists, in the 
practrce of all the arts connected with agriculture. May Heaven 
prosper such a plan of education, worthy of the most glorious 
periods of antiquity ! It is no less adapted to a warlike than to 
an agricultural Nation. The children of the Persians, in the 
time of Cyrus, and by his orders, were fed with bread, water 
and cresses : they elected leaders among themselves, to whom 
they yielded prompt obedience ; they formed Assemblies in 
which, as in those of their fathers, were discussed all the ques- 
tions which concerned the public good. With these children it 
was, after they had become men, that Cyrus effected the con- 
quest of Asia. I observe that Lycurgus introduced a conside- 
rable part of the physical and moral regimen of the children of 
the Persians, into the education of those of Lacedemon, 

It is at least indispensably necessary to teach our children 
what they are bound to practise when they are grown men, and 
to prepare the rising generation for relishing our new Constitu- 
tion, for fear lest one day, out of emulation with respect to their 
fathers, as we have frequently done respecting ours, they should 
think of subverting all our Laws, merely to gratify the vanity 
of substituting others in their place. From a national education,, 
connected with our future legislation, there will result a Co 


tution appropriate to our occasions and to those of our posterity. 
The t-ffect of this will be, that the greatest part of men of supe- 
rior minds, being no longer repelled from public employments, 
by their venality, will not henceforward seclude themselves in 
Academies and Universities, to devote their whole attention to 
the affairs of Greece and Rome, in which they oblige us to ad- 
mire their powers of thought, though they are scarcely ever em- 
ployed in the service of their Country ; like those antique vases 
which give us pleasure from the beauty of their forms, but serve 
no purpose except to make a show in our cabinets, because they 
were not fabricated for use. 

Having made provision for the felicity of the French Nation, 
by all the means capable of perpetuating the duration of it with- 
in the Kingdom, it would be worthy of the National Assembly 
to direct it's attention to those which may secure it externally, 
by proper arrangements with foreign Nations. 


THE same policy which, for their common happiness, unites 
all the families of a Nation among themselves, ought to unite 
all the nations of the Globe to each other, for they arc the fami- 
lies of the human race. All men mutually communicate, even 
without any doubt on the subject, their calamities and their bene- 
fits, from one extremity of the Earth to the other. The greatest 
part of our wars, of our epidemic disorders, of our prejudices, 
of our errors, have come to us from without. The same thing 
is true as to our arts, our sciences, and our laws. But without 
going farther than to the blessings of Nature, let us cast an eye 
on our plains. We are indebted for almost all the vegetables 
with which they are enriched, to the Egyptians, to the Greeks, 
to the Romans, to the Americans, to savage Nations. Our flax 
comes from the banks of the Nile, the vine from the Archipe- 
lago, the corn-plant from Sicily, the walnut-tree from Crete, the 
pear-tree from Mount Ida, the lucern from Media, the potato 
from America, the cherry-tree from the Kingdom of Polities, 
and so of the rest. What a delightful harmony is this day 
formed of the assemblage of those foreign vegetables all over the 


mountains and plains of France ! It looks as if Nature, like ;i 
King, were there assembling her Estates-General. We there 
distinguish different orders, as among the men of the country. 
Here are the humble grassy plants, which like the peasantry 
produce useful harvests : out of their bosom rise the fruit I 
whose productions though less necessary are more agreeable, 
but which require the operation of grafting, and a culture more 
assiduous, like our burghers. On the high grounds are the oaks, 
the firs, and the other powers of the forests, who like the No- 
bility shelterthe low-lands from the winds, or like the Clergy 
raise themselves to Heaven to catch it's refreshing dews. In 
the corner of a valley are nursery grounds like schools in which 
are reared the youth of the orchards and of the woods. No 
one of their vegetables injures another ; all enjoy the benefits of 
the soil and of the Sun ; all contribute mutual assistance, and 
lend to each other mutual graces. The weakest serve as orna- 
ments to the most robust, and the more robust as a support to 
the feeble. The ever-green ivy mantles round the rugged bark 
of the oak ; the gilded mistletoe glitters through the dusky foli- 
age of the alder ; the trunk of the maple encircles itself with 
garlands of honey-suckle, and the pyramidical poplar of Italy 
raises toward Heaven the empurpled clusters of the vine. Each 
class of vegetables has it's proper bird for its orator : the lark 
warbles as he soars above the swelling harvest ; the turtle mur- 
murs and sighs from the summit of an elm ; the nightingale 
utters her plaintive strain from the bosom of a thorny brake. At 
the different seasons of the year, tribes of swallows, of quails, 
of plovers, of loriots, of red-breasts, arrive from the North or 
from the South, build their nests in our plains, and go to rest in 
the caravanseras which Nature had prepared for them. Each 
of them addresses his petitions to the Sun, as to a King, and 
implores the diffusion of his blessings over the district which 
he inhabits. They sojourn in our fields, our fallows and our 
groves, only because they recognize in them the plants of dieir 
own country, and find among us the means of living in abun- 
dance. Man alone finds no asylum in the possessions of Man, 
if he has the misfortune to be a stranger. In vain does the 
Italian sigh at sight of the fig-tree which shaded his infancy ; in 
vain does the Englishman admire in our French plains the 


farming of his own country : both the one and the other may 
ih hunger in the midst of our exuberant crops, unless 
have money, and perhaps in prison, if they have no pass- 
port, or belong to a Nation at war with us. 

It was not by this indifference about strangers that the Na- 
tions of the East attained the point of grandeur which has ren- 
dered them the centre of the Nations. They never visit the 
countries of Europe, but they attract to themselves the men of 
all countries by establishments replete with humanity. The 
most meritorious object of their religion to the Princes, and the 
opulent Citizens, -is to construct, for the accommodation of tra- 
vellers, bridges over rivers, reservoirs of fresh water in dry 
places, and caravanseras in the cities and upon the high roads. 
The tomb of the founder frequently rises close by the monu- 
ment of his beneficence, and provisions are there distributed on 
certain days to passengers of every description. The traveller 
pronounces blessings on the hand which prepares for him an 
unexpected swpply in the midst of a desert, and preserves to 
his last breath the recollection of that land of hospitality. The 
Orientalists permit to all Nations the free exercise of their Re- 
ligion ; and if they receive their Ambassadors, they keep them 
clear of all expense during their residence. Such are, with 
respect to strangers, the manners of the Turks, of the Persians, 
of the Indians, of the Chinese ; of those Nations which we have 
the insolence to brand with the name of barbarians. 

The study of Nature alone can diffuse illumination relative 
to the rights of Mankind, and to our own intolerant associations 
have usurped them in Europe, during ages really barbarous. 
They monopolized, to their private emolument, our homage, 
our riches, our illumination, and our duties ; but in assuming 
the empire of opinion, they were unable to make themselves 
masters of that of Nature. It was the revival of learning which 
brought us back to her laws. The study of her harmonies first 
appeared among nations of delicate sensibility, and that of her 
elements among nations given to reflection. Italy produced 
poets and painters ; Germany naturalits ; and England philo- 
sophers. Light quickly extended it's irradiation from the fos- 
sil to the vegetable kingdom ; Tournefort arose in France, and 
Li mi ecus in Sweden. The study of the. vegetable world had 


made, toward the commencement of the present century, a very 
considerable progress in England. The friends of Mankind 
and of Nature, transplanted into their gardens the wild plants 
of our plains, and naturalized in our plains the foreign plants 
which they* cultivated in their gardens. A man reposed him- 
self near his house, on the herbage of the meadows at the foot 
of the trees of the forests, and travelled through the champaigr 
of Europe under the shade of the great chestnut of India and 
the acacia of America. Certain philosophers, among others 
Biiffbn, attempted to naturalize at home the animals of foreign 
countries ; but from want of considering that the animal king- 
dom is necessarily allied to the vegetable, those attempts were 
attended with scarcely any success. The rein-deer, and the 
vigon of Peru, refused to live in our climates, where they found 
not the plants of their own country which serve them for food- 
Nevertheless, animals of the warmest climates, shut up in our 
menageries, produced young ones. We have seen with sur- 
prise the titiris and the malm of Madagascar, and the paroquets 
of Guinea propagated in France. The parents, undoubtedly, 
surrounded by plantains, yucas, aloes, thought themselves to 
be in the forests of Africa, and the sentiment of Country, re- 
kindled in them that of Love. There can be no doubt that each 
of them would make his nest in the midst of our fields, did ihc 
vegetable which is to feed his brood there produce it's fruit. 

O ! how worthy it would be of an enlightened, rich and ge- 
nerous Nation, to naturalize in it's bosom the men of foreign 
lands, and to behold families of Asiatics, of Africans, of Ame- 
ricans multiplying themselves amidst the very plants for which 
we stand indebted to them ! Our Princes rear in their manage- 
ries, in the vicinity of their castles, tigers, hyena3, white bears, 
lions, and the ferocious animals of every quarter of the Globe, 
as marks of grandeur ; it would be much more glorious for them 
to make provision around their Palaces for the unfortunate of 
all Nations, as so many testimonies of their humanity. 

Political interest is in truth beginning to diffuse this senti- 
ment over Europe, and the North has set the example of it. 
Russia values herself on having in dependence upon her men ot 
all Nations and of all Religions. At the time of the coronation 
of the Empress Catharine II. at Moscow, her first painter hav 


ing done me the honour to ask my opinion respecting the com- 
position of the picture which he was called upon to produce on 
that occasion, I advised him to introduce into it the deputies of 
all the Nations which are subject to the Empire of Russia, Tar- 
tars, Finlanders, Cosaques, Samoiedes, Livonians, Kamtscha- 
dales, Laplanders, Siberians, Chinese, &c. bringing every one 
as a present some peculiar production of his own country. The 
phisiognomies, the appropriate dresses and the offerings of so 
many different tribes would have, in my judgment, figured much 
better in that august ceremony, than the diamonds and all the 
gaudy tapestry of the crown. But whether it was that this sim- 
ple and popular idea did not meet those of a Court Painter, or 
that the execution of it appeared to him to be too difficult, he 
substituted in it's room the unintelligible common-place fictions 
of allegory. There were in my own time in the service of Rus- 
sia, Frenchmen, Englishmen, Dutchmen, Germans, Danes, 

Swedes, Polanders, Spaniards, Italians, Greeks, Persians 

Russia owes these enlarged views to Peter the great. That 
Prince admitted even Negroes into his military service. He 
raised to the rank of Lieutenant-General a coast of Guinea 
Black, named Annibal, whom he had ordered to be instructed 
from a child, and who had attended him in all his campaigns. 
He honoured this African with his confidence to such a degree 
as to confer on him the place of Director-General of Artillery ; 
a fact which it gives me pleasure to relate, as it exposes the 
presumption of those who do not suppose black people capable 
of a certain degree of intelligence. I have seen at Petersburg, 
in 1765, the son of this Negro General, who was Colonel of a 
regiment, and universally esteemed, though a Mulatto. 

Wherefore have not we Frenchmen, who look upon ourselves 
as much more polished than Russians, hitherto rendered a si- 
milar tribute of justice to the Nations ? I have seen indeed 
Turks in the King's service ; but it was on board the galleys. 
Being at Toulon in 1763, on the point of embarking for Malta, 
then threatened with a siege on the part of the Turks, a man 
with a long beard, in a turban and robe, who was sitting with 
his legs under him at the door of the Marine Coffee-house, em- 
braced my knees as I came out, and spake in an unknown lan- 
guage something which I did not comprehend. A naval officer 


who understood what he had said, told me that this person was 
a Turkish slave, who knowing that I was on my way to Malta 
and entertaining no doubt that his Sultan would take that Island 
and reduce to slavery every one he found there, expressed his 
concern at my tailing so early in life into a destiny similar to 
his own. I thanked the good Mussulman for the interest he 
took in me, and asked the Officer why this Turk himself w 
slave in France, seeing we were at peace with the Turks, nay 
more, their Allies. He said to me, " That this man had ' 
" taken on board a vessel belonging to the Barbary Coast, but 
" that it was merely from regard to the etiquette and dignity of 
44 his Majesty's service that he was detained in slavery, as well 
" as some others of his compatriots ; that they had for keeping 
" up this custom, now of long standing, a particular galley called 
" the Turkish ; that those on board were treated with the ut- 
" most kindness, and permitted to do almost whatever they 
" pleased, only great care was taken to prevent their writing to 
" Constantinople, for fear of their being reclaimed by the Porte. v 
The term dignity has frequently recurred to my mind, without 
my being able to comprehend what it meant. What relation can 
there be between the dignity of our Kings and the slavery of a 
handful of Turks who never did them any harm I It is undoubt- 
edly for the sake of maintaining this same dignity, that men are 
represented in chains at the feet of their statues. But since our 
Kings must have Turks, as the Princes of Asia have elephants, 
it appears to me that it would be much more becoming their 
dignity to place them in a good refectory than on board a galley. 

The Princes of Europe, it is true, keep up foreign regiments 
in their pay, and maintain Consuls, Residents and Ambassadors 
at Foreign Courts : but these Ministers of their politics are fre- 
quently the cause of our quarrels. Nations ought to unite them- 
selves to each other, not by treaties of peace and commerce, 
but by benefits ; not by the interests of pride or avarice, but by 
those of humanity and virtue. 

Of this our own Country ought to set the example to the Na- 
tions. We are of all the States of Europe that which possesses 
most philanthropy, and we owe it to our corrupt institutions. 
Philanthropy is natural to the human heart, but Nature has di- 
vided it into different degrees, that we may serve an apprentice- 


ship to it, by passing through the different ages of life. We 
pass in succession through the love of our family, of our tribe, 
of our country, before we are instructed to love Mankind. In 
infancy we learn to love our parents, who have given us birth 
and education ; in youth, the tribe that secures to us a situation 
in which we can subsist, and furnishes a companion for re-pro- 
ducing ourselves ; in mature age, the country which associates 
us to it's employments, and supplies the means of establishing 
our family ; finally, in the decline of life, delivered from the 
dominion of most of our passions, we extend our affections to 
all Mankind. But these successive stages through which Na- 
ture obliges us to travel in the career of human life, in order 
to extend the enjoyment with the progress, are destroyed by- 
social habits. 

The love of family is extinguished, from the days of infancy, 
by the nursing and boarding of children at a distance from the 
paternal roof; that of tribe, by the spirit of finance, which con- 
founds every distinction of rank ; that of country, because we 
can rise to nothing in it without money : nothing then remains 
but to love Mankind, of whom we have no room to complain. 
Besides, this philanthropic disposition is what Nature demands 
of us at all times ; for she has formed men to love and to suc- 
cour each other all over the Globe. Nay it is very remarkable 
that most of the Nations which have rendered themselves il- 
lustrious in the first degree of philanthropy, have stopped short 
there, and never attained the last. The Chinese, whose patri- 
archal Government is founded on paternal affection, have se- 
questered themselves from the rest of mankind still more by 
their laws than by their great wall. The Indians and the Jews, 
so attached to their casts or tribes, have despised other Nations 
to such a degree as never to contract intermarriages with them. 
The Greeks and Romans, so celebrated for their patriotism, 
considered the other Nations of the Earth, as barbarians ; thev 
bestowed no other name upon them, and made the whole of 
their own glory consist in effecting the conquest of their coun- 
tries. In must be acknowledged however in praise of the Ro- 
mans, that they frequently incorporated the conquered Nations 
with themselves, by communicating to them the privileges of 
Roman citizens ; and this humane policy was the real cause oi 

Vol. III. Z z 


their rapid successes, and the source of their greatness. Let 
the French Nation devote it's exertions to promote the felicity 
of all other Nations ; it is an infallible method to make sure of 
the conquest of the Globe. The Tartars over-ran part by dint 
of numbers ; the Greeks, under Alexander, by means of dis- 
cipline ; the Romans by patriotism ; the Turks by religion ; all 
of them by terror : let us conquer it by love. Their Empire 
has passed away ; ours will be permanent. We have already 
subjugated Europe by our arts, our modes, and our language ; 
we already reign over the minds of men, let us likewise estab- 
lish a dominion over their hearts. Let us exhibit to all the 
Nations of the Universe a legislation which ensures our own 
happiness. Let us invite them, by our example, to re-establish 
in their respective countries the Laws of Nature ; and in the 
mean time let us raise them to the enjoyment of their first 
rights, by offering them an asylum in our bosom. 

For the accomplishment of an object so interesting, I could 
wish to have destined to it a vast space in the vicinity of Paris, 
on the banks of the Seine in it's progress toward the Sea. The 
place selected ought to consist of a variegated surface, formed of 
mountains, rocks, brooks, heaths, meadows. It might be sown 
with all the exotic plants already naturalized in our climate, or 
such as may be so ; the large vetches of Siberia with blue and 
white blossoms, which produce a copious pasturage ; the trefoil 
of the same country, which is no less prolific ; the hemp of 
China, which rises like a tree to the height of fifteen feet ; the 
different millets, the gum of Mingrelia, the corn of Turkey, 
the rhubarb of Tartary, the madder, and so on. Care would 
be taken to plant it in groups with all the foreign trees and 
shrubs which in our gardens stood the severity of last Winter, 
the acacias, the thuyas, the trees of Judea and of Sante-Lucie, 
the sumach, the sorb apple, the prelea, the iilach, the andromc- 
da, the liquidambar, the cypress, the ebony, the amelancier, 
the tulip-tree of Virginia, the cedar of Lebanon, the pop- 
lars of Italy and Holland, the plane-trees of Asia and of 
America, 8cc. Every vegetable would there be in the soil, and 
the exposition most suitable to it. There we might have con- 
trasted the moveable and gay foliage of the birch, with the py- 
ramidical and solemn fir j the catalpa, with broad hear 


leaves, which raises toward Heaven it's stiff branches like those 
of a chandelier, with the Babylonish willow, whose boughs droop 
down to the ground like a long head of hair ; the acacia, whose 
light-shades play in the rays of the Sun, with the thick-leaved 
mulberry-tree of China which completely obstructs their trans- 
mission ; the thuya, whose flattened boughs resemble the slices of 
a rock, with the larch which has it's garnished with pencils like 
tufts of silk. Those groves might be peopled with pheasants, 
Manilla ducks, India hens, peacocks, deer, roe-bucks, and all the 
innocent animals which are able to bear our climate. We should 
sec in their purlieus the nimble stag bound by the creeping tor- 
toise ; and under their umbrage the shining wood-pecker clam- 
bering along the bark of the fir-tree, or the Siberian squirrel, of 
the silvery pearl-gray, springing from branch to branch. On 
the bosom of a brook the swan would steer his peaceful course 
close by the beaver, busied in building his lodge on it's brink. 
Many birds would be attracted thither by the vegetables of 
their country, and would be naturalized like them, when the 
terror of the fowler was no more. 

This territory might be divided into small portions sufficient 
for the amusement of a family, and the property of them com- 
pletely transferred to the unfortunate of all Nations, to serve 
them as a retreat. Habitations might likewise be built in them 
adapted to the demands of Nature, and provision made for 
them of food and clothing corresponding to their native fashion;;. 

What spectacle more magnificent, more lovely, more affect- 
ing, than to behold upon the mountains and in the valleys of 
Trance, the animals of all climates, and the wretched families of 
all Nations, pursuing at perfect liberty their natural tastes, and 
ight back to happiness by our hospitality. Under the 
shade of the olive-tree of Bohemia, or rather of Syria, the odour 
of which is grateful to the people of the Erst, a silent and reserv- 
"urk, escaped from the bow-string of the Seraglio, would 
gravel}' smoke his pipe ; while in his vicinity, a Greek of the 
lipelago, delighted at finding himself no longer under the 
' ish master, would cultivate, singing as he laboured, 
ices the laudanum. An Indian of Mexico 
rip off th of the cocoa, without fear of being 

and drink it in the mines of 


Peru ; and close by him, the pensive Spaniard would read every 
book which might minister to his instruction, tree from the 
terror of the Inquisition. There the Paria would not be de- 
voted to infamy by the Bramin, and the Bramin in return would 
not there be oppressed by the European. Justice and humani- 
ty would extend even to the brute creation. The savage of 
Canada would not in such a place form a design of stripping the 
ingenious beaver of his skin, and no enemy would wish in his 
turn to carry off the scalp of the savage. Harmless men and 
animals would there find at all seasons a secure asylum. An 
Englishman, in a little island sown with rye-grass, employing 
himself in rearing a breed of coursers, or in the construction of 
barks still fleeter for the course, would think himself in his own 
country ; while a Jew, who no longer has a Country, would call 
to remembrance that of his fore-fathers, and sing the songs of 
Zion, on the banks of the Seine, at the foot of a willow of Ba- 
bylon. A boat made fast to a linden-tree would serve as a 
home to the family of a Dutchman, ready at all times to navi- 
gate up and down the river to accommodate the demands of 
the Colony j and a tent fixed on wheels, drawn by camels, 
would lodge that of a wandering Tartar, whose care at every 
season is the discovery of a situation that suits him best. 
The Laplander, on the highest mountain, would in Summer 
lead his herd of rein-deer to pasture under a forest of firs, near 
a glaciere, while at the bottom of the valley, to the South, in the 
most rigorous Winter, a Negro of Senegal would cultivate in a 
hot-house the nopal loaded with the cochineal. A great many 
plants and animals which resist our method of culture, would 
take pleasure to reproduce themselves in the hands of their 
compatriots ; and many foreign families which pine and die 
with regret out of their own country, would become naturalized 
in ours, amidst their native plants and animals. 

There would be in this spot of every Nation but one single 
family, which should represent it, not by it's luxury which ex- 
cites cupidity, but by the attraction of misfortune, which in all 
men excites a lively interest. These retreats would be granted 
not to birth, nor money, nor intrigue, but to calamity. Among 
claimants of the same country, the preference would be given to 
the man who had been made to drink most deeply from the cup 


of affliction, and who should seem to have merited it the least. 
The choice would be left to the other inhabitants of the place, 
who, having passed through the same ordeal of experience, 
must be their natural peers and judges. 

Such an establishment would cost the state a very small mat- 
ter. Every Province of France might found within itself an 
asylum for a family of the Nation with which it is most closely 
connected by its Commerce. A similar exertion might be made 
by those of our Grandees, who having merited well of their 
own vassals, feel themselves worthy of being the protectors of 
a Nation. Finally, foreign powers should be admitted to the 
honour of establishing similar refuges in our Country, for a fa- 
mily of their unfortunate subjects. Those powers would not 
be slack to imitate our example at home. Most of them have, 
like us, foreign soldiers in their pay, and National Ambassadors 
at Foreign Courts, all to display their glory, that is, frequently 
to scatter misery over the World. It would cost them much 
less to do for the interest of humanity, what they have been 
doing so long, and to so little purpose, for the promotion of 
their political views. 

The most unspeakable benefits would result from it in favour 
of our Manufactures and Trade. We should find in those fa- 
milies an accession of new industry for the improvement of arts 
and agriculture ; of observations to assist scholars and philoso- 
phers ; of interpreters for all languages ; and of centres of cor- 
respondence for every part of the Globe. Thus, as at Amster- 
dam, every pillar of the Exchange, inscribed with the name of 
a foreign City, is the centre of the Commerce of Holland with 
that City, every family, escaped from calamity would be, in 
this sanctuary, the centre of the hospitality of France with re- 
spect to a foreign Nation. A Frenchman would no longer have 
occasion to travel from home, in order to acquire the knowledge 
of Nature and of Mankind : he might see in the spot I have 
been describing all that is most interesting over the face of the 
Earth ; the most useful plants and animals; and, what is of all 
other things the most affecting to the heart of man, unfortunate 
beings who have ceased to be such. By bringing all these fa- 
milies into contact, we should extinguish among them the pre- 


judices and the animosities which inflame their respective Na 
tions, and occasion the greatest part of the miseries which they 

In the midst of their habitations there should be an uninha- 
bited grove, formed of all the foreign trees which have been 
naturalized by time and culture in our country, and of those 
which grow spontaneously in our forests, such as the elm, the 

poplar, the oak, and the like In the centre of this grove there 

should be plantations of all our fruit trees, walnuts, vines, ap- 
ples, pears, chestnuts, apricots, peaches, cherries, interspersed 
amidst fields of corn, strawberries, and pot-herbs which servi 
for food to man. Amidst this scene of cultivation, terminated 
by a brook with banks sufficiently steep to serve as a fence to 
the animals, should be a vast down for the continual pasturage 
of herds of cows, flocks of sheep, of goats, and of all the animals 
which minister to the comfort of man by their milk, their wool, 
or their services. Toward the centre of this down should be 
reared a spacious Temple in form of a rotundo, open to the 
four cardinal points of the Globe, without figures, without orna- 
ments, without inscriptions and without gates, like those which 
in the early ages of the world were consecrated to the Author of 
Nature. On every day of the year, each family would resort 
hither in it's turn at' the rising and setting of the sun, there to 
recite in the language of their fathers, the prayer of the Gospel, 
which being addressed to God as the Father of Mankind, is 
adapted to men of all nations. Accordingly, as most religions 
have set apart to God a particular day of every week ; the 
Turks, Friday ; the Jews, Saturday ; Christians, Sunday ; the 
Nations of Nigritia, Tuesday; and other Nations undoubtedly, 
Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday, the Deity would be ap- 
proached in this Temple with solemn religious worship every 
day of the week, and in a different language all the days of the 

As happy animals gather round the habitations of men with- 
out fear, in like manner, happy men would assemble without the 
spirit of intolerance around the Temple of the Divinity. A sense 
of gratitude to God, and to men, would there gradually draw to 
approximation the languages, the customs, and the worship 


which separate the inhabitants of all the Earth. Nature would 
there triumph over political distinction. The inhabitants of 
this Colony would there present God in common the fruits with 
which he sustains human life in our climates. As the year is 
a perpetual circle of his benefits, and as every Moon brings new 
foliage, or fruits, or pot-herbs every new Moon would be the 
epocha of their crops, of their offerings, and of their principal 
festivals. On these hallowed days all the families might assem- 
ble round the Temple, there to partake in common of a harm- 
less repast, consisting of the roots of the plants, the fruits of the 
trees, the corn of the grasses, and the milk of the flocks. Love 
would bring them still nearer to each other. The young peo- 
ple of both sexes would there dance upon the down to the sound 
of the different instruments of their own Country. The female 
Indian of the Ganges, with a tambour in her hand, brown and 
lively like a daughter of Aurora, would behold with smiles a son 
of the Thames, smitten with her charms, laying at her feet the 
rich muslins of which Calcutta strips her country. The bles- 
sings of love would there compensate the rapine of war. The 
timid Indian girl of Peru would there permit her eyes to re- 
pose on those of a young Spaniard, become her lover an 
protector. The Negress of the Guinea coast, with her neck- 
lace of coral and teeth of Ivor} 7 , would smile on the son of the 
European who formerly led her fathers in chains of iron, and 
would desire no other revenge than to lock the son, in her turn, 
in her arms of ebony. 

Love and marriage would there unite lovers of all Nations, 
Tartars and women of Mexico, the Siamese and Laponian, the 
Russian and the Algonkine, the Persian and the Moresco, th<_ 
Kamtschadale and the female Georgian. Felicity would at- 
tract thither all men to the practice of toleration. The French- 
woman during the dance would with one hand place a garland 
of flowers on the head of a German, and with the other pour out 
wine into the cup of a Turk. She would animate by her frank- 
ness and decent graces, those hospitable feasts given in her 
country to all the tribes of the universe, and when the setting- 
Sun should lengthen on the downs the shadow of the groves, and 
gild their summits with his departing beams, all the choirs of 
the dance collected round the Temple, would sing in concert to 


the Author of Nature a hymn of gratitude, repeated by the 
echoes from distance to distance. 

Ah ! why should I not one day see in this Asylum for the 
misery of the Human Race, some of the wretched beings whom 
I have met far from their native country, without any one to 
take an interest in them ! One day in the Isle of France, a 
weakly white Slave, Avhose shoulders were flead by carrying 
stones, threw himself at my feet, and besought me to intercede 
for his liberty, of which, for several years past, he had been de- 
prived by Europeans, in violation of the Law of Nations, for he 
was a Chinese. I represented his case to the intendant of the 
island, who having been in China, knew him to be Chinese, 
and sent him home to his country. But what purpose does it 
serve to be delivered from slavery, if a man must continue to 
struggle with poverty, neglect and old-age ? At Paris, on a 
time, an old Negro quite emaciated, smoking on a post the 
stump of a pipe, and almost naked in the midst of winter, said 
to me in a dying tone of voice : " Take pity on a miserable Ne- 
" gro." Unfortunate creature, said I to myself, What good can 
the pity of such a man as myself do to thee ? Not only thou, 
but thy whole Nation stands in need of pity from the powers of 
Europe ! How many times have children, women, old-men, who 
did not speak French, presented themselves to me in the streets, 
unable to explain their distresses and their wants but by tears. 
Not for their sakes, but for their Sovereign's, the Ambassadors 
of their Nations reside at Paris. Were there but a single fami- 
ly maintained there by the State, some one at least might be 
found with whom to weep. Why may it not be permitted me 
one day to behold in the Asylum which I wish to provide for 
them, some of the men of the Nations who have honoured my- 
self with their hospitality and their fears ! I have found such in 
Holland, in Russia, in Prussia, who said to me : " Forget a 
" Countrv which repels you, and pass your days with us." Some 
of them have said, what perhaps a rich man of my own Country 
never said to one that was poor : " Accept the hand of my sis- 
" ter, and be my brother." But how could I have accepted a 
hand which would have given me a companion for life and a 
brother ; when, at a distance from my Country, I could no 
longer dispose of my heart ? No, it is not climate nor language 


by which men are disunited ; but intolerant corps and treache- 
rous Courts ; for I have every where found man at once good 
and unfortunate. Oh ! with what glory would France clothe 
If, were she to open in her bosom a retreat for the wretch- 
ed of all Nations ! Happy, could I consecrate to this hallowed 
'lishment the scanty fruits of my labours ! Happy ! could I 
but finish my days, were it but in a hut, on some rugged cliff 
of a mountain under the fir and the juniper, but beholding at a 
distance, on the hills and in the valleys, men formerly disjoined 
by language, government, religion, reunited in the bosom of 
abundance and liberty by the hospitality of France ! 

To you, O Louis XVI ! I address these wishes, who in con- 
voking the States-general of the Kingdom, have invited me to 
form and express them, by summoning every subject to the foot 
of the Throne. To your attention I recommend them, ye Mi- 
nisters of a Religion which breathes goodwill to men ; to you I 
call, generous Nobles, who have an immortal glory for the ob- 
ject of your ambition ; ye defenders of the People whose voice 
must make itself heard by posterity : you of every description, 
who by virtue, birth, fortune or talents, constitute powers in the 
august Assembly of the Nation. I nominate you as my repre- 
sentatives in it, ye women oppressed by the laws, children ren- 
dered miserable by an injudicious education, a peasantry oppres- 
sed by imposts, citizens forced into celibacy, the feudal slaves 
of Mount Jura, the Negroes of our Colonies, ye unfortunate of 
all Nations ; could your sorrows and your tears make them- 
selves heard in the midst of that Assembly of upright and en 
lightened citizens, the wishes which I form in your behalf should 
speedily be transformed into so many laws. 

May these wishes at length be accomplished ! At sight of a 
church-spire or nobleman's castle, rising above exuberant har- 
}, may the solitary Widow pursuing her journey on foot, 
and the still more unfortunate Mother surrounded by perishing 
infants, secretly rejoice as at the sight of a place of refuge des- 
tined to protect them, to comfort and to nourish them ! Or ra- 
ther, O France ! through thy rich and extensive plains may no 
indigent person henceforward be seen ; may property of mode- 
xtent diffuse over thy surface, to the very heaths, industry, 
abundance and joy ; in thy meanest hamlets may every young 

Vol. III. 3 A 


woman find a lover, and every lover a faithful wife ; may thy 
mothers behold their crops multiply with their families ; may thy 
children be for ever preserved from that fatal ambition which 
produces all the evils which befal mankind ; may they learn 
from the heart of a mother to live only to love, and to love only 
to propagate life ; and may thy old men, the fellow-workers in 
promoting thy future felicity, close their days in hope and tran- 
quillity, which are the gift of Heaven to those only who love 
God and men. 

O France ! may thy Monarch walk about unguarded through 
the midst of his children, and see them in return deposit at his 
feet the cheerful tribute of affection aud gratitude ! May the Na- 
tions of Europe there assemble their States-general, and form 
with us but one family of which he may be the head ! In a 
word, may all the Nations of the World, whose unfortunate 
subjects we shall have succoured, send their Deputies thither in 
process of time, to bless God in every language of the habitable 
Globe, and to contribute to the relief of Man in all the exigen- 
cies of human life ! 



CERTAIN persons have expressed surprise that after hav- 
ing spoken, in my Studies of Nature, of the causes which were 
likely to produce the revolution, I should have declined to ac- 
cept any employment in it. To this I shall make the reply 
already stated : it is that for more than twenty years past the 
state of my health has not permitted me to mix in any assembly, 
political, literary, religious, or even convivial, if there be a 
crowd, and the doors shut. Some of my friends allege that the 
desire of getting out, and the spasmodic agitations which I then 
undergo, arise from an over exquisite sentiment of liberty : it 
may be so ; but God forbid I should endeavour to make my 
infirmities pass for virtues ! My maladies are real maladies ; 
they are produced by a derangement of my nervous system, the 
effect of the rude shocks to which my life has been exposed.* 

* This malady is much more ancient than is generally imagined. I find 
>! lowing passage on the subject toward the beginning of the 51th Epis- 
tle of Seneca to Lucilius : 

l.onguin mihi commeatum dederat mala valetudo ; repentc invasit. 

Quo genere, inquis ? Prorsua merito me interrogas : adeo nullum mihi igno- 

Unn est. Uni tamen morbo quasi assignatus sum, quern quare Graeco nomine 

hi, nescio. Satis enim apte dici suspirium potest. Brevis autem valde 

&. procellae siinilis est. Intra horam fere desinit. Quis enim dicu expirat \ 

Omnia corporis aut tncommoda aut pericula per me tr&nsierunt : nullum mihi 

;• niolcstius : Qiudni ? Aliud enim quidquid est cgrotare est, hoc est, 

[taque medici hanc meditationem mortis vocant. 

" M, ion had given me a considerably long respite ; but attacked 

Of what nature is it, you will ask ? Good reason you 


Independently of the physical causes which forbid my mixing 
with assemblies, I had other reasons of a moral nature. I had 
acquired an experience so long and so discouraging of mankind, 
that for some time past I formed the resolution of expecting no 
portion whatever of my happiness from them. I had conse- 
quently retired for several years into one of the least frequented 
suburbs of Paris. There I tried to comfort myself with the re- 
collection of the vain efforts which' I had formerly made to serve 
my Country in reality, by amusing myself about it's prosperitv 
in speculation. I imagined in my retirement that I had suffi- 
ciently acquitted myself of my duty as a Citizen, by daring, 
under the old Government, to publish the disorders which were 
going to produce the Revolution, and the means which I deemed 
necessary to prevent it, by suggesting a remedy for our calami- 
ties. I have attacked in my Studies of Nature, published for 
the first time in 1784, the abuse which has pervaded the Finan- 
ces, great territorial Properties, the Nobility, the Clergy, Aca- 
demies, Universities, Education, &c without health, without 

reputation, without corporation-interest, without patronage, and 
without fortune, which is of itself, in the present state of the 
world, equivalent to every other resource. I have to say far- 
ther, that I had no means of subsistence except a moderate an- 
nual gratuity, which was entirely at the disposal of the depart- 

" hare for putting the question : to such a degree have I felt every existing 
" species of malady. I run however delivered up as it were to one distemper, 
" which I can see no reason for calling- by a Greek name ; for it may with 
" sufficient propriety be denominated the sighing illness. The paroxysm is 
" very short, and resembles the vio'ence of a tempest. It generally spends 
" itself within the hour ; for who can remain long in giving up the ghost \ All 
" the disorders and dangers to which the human body is exposed have passed 
" through mine, but I know no one more insupportable. How so ? Every 
" other disorder, of whatever kind, is only to be sick, but this is actually dy- 
" ing. Physicians, on this account, call it meditation of death." 

This malady, if 1 am not mistaken, iias a perfect resemblance to the nervous 
disorder. It was perhaps to Seneca the source of his philosophy, which in 
return alleviated disease : it instructed him how to support it as well as the 
atrocities of .Aero. Philosophy then is necessary to all men, as one in 
as violently tormented, in the calmest retreat, by a sigh, as by the most in- 
human tyrant. 

The Epistles of Senecato Lucilhis are, in my opinion, his best production. 
He composed them in his old age, after having passed through 
severe ordeal of affliction 


inent whose power and irregularity I had chiefly combatted, that 
of the Finances. The benefit which I derived from it was so 
al, that it depended from year to year on the good pleasure 
of the upper Clerk, and afterwards on that of the Minister, 
himself so dependent on the will of another, that there were ten 
successively in the course of two years. I cannot conceive the 
')ility of any Writer's finding himself in my situation, even 
among those who have devoted themselves most strenuously to 
the public cause. "John-James was personally connected with 
Grandees who were fond of his works ; with Ministers who fa- 
voured the publication of them, even by confiscating them ; with 
women of beauty and fashion who defended them against the 
world ; but what is of still more importance, his musical talents 
alone were sufficient to procure him an absolute independence 
on all the world. For my own part, it was a matter of great 
dubiety, whether I should have any thing of the kind, but it was 
not totally for want of puffers : for I had embroiled myself, from 
the very principles which I had laid down, with philosophers 
who had at their absolute disposal most of the daily journals, 
those trumpeters of reputation. 

A judgment may be formed of the difficulties which I had to 
surmount, bv those which I have actually encountered in pro- 
curing permission to print and publish my Studies of Nature. 
I had at first composed the greater part of that Work, in fur- 
nished lodgings in the rue de la Madeleine, and I arranged my 
materials in a little turret in the rue ncuve St. Etienne du-Mont y 
where I had lived four years amidst disquietudes physical and 
domestic of a singular nature. There likewise it was that I 
enjoyed the most delicious pleasures of my life, amidst a pro- 
found solitude, and an enchanting horizon. I should perhaps 
have been there still, had I not been obliged by the caprice of 
the proprietor to quit it, as he took a fancy to pull it down ; 
here I put the last hand to my Studies of Nature, and here it 
was I published them. My first business was to apply to Chan- 
cery to have my manuscript inspected ; but a kind of Secretary 
of the Press-department insisted on my leaving it in his cus- 
tody. As it was filled with ideas peculiar to myself, it would 
have been very improper to trust my Work to the indiscretion 
or carelessness of a Public Office. After repeated solicitations 


I prevailed so far as to have it submitted to the inspection of a 
Censor. He was a very distinguished literary character: it 
received his entire approbation ; but, conformably to the r< gu- 
latjons, he was under the necessity of referring me to a Theo- 
logian, because it contained matter of a moral kind. This 
Gentleman was very much offended that I had not applied to 
him in the first instance. He disputed every page of my manu- 
script with me. He imputed dangerous ideas to words the 
most innocent ; he found fault, for example, with my having 
said that Louis XVI. had called the British Americans to liber- 
ty ; he wished me to retrench the word liberty, condemned, as 
he alleged, by the Keeper of the Great Seal, as being the ral- 
lying term among Philosophers. It cost me no little pains to 
make him comprehend that I did not mean the liberty of 
thought of the Anglo-Americans, but their political liberty, to- 
ward effecting which Louis XVI. had contributed, as all the 
world knows. He did not choose that I should expose the 
abuses of corps, those of the University however excepted, be- 
cause he was Professor in the Royal College, the rival seminary 
for education. I was astonished to find how many disputes I 
had to sustain with a Theologian on the subject of my best 
proofs of a superintending Providence. Frequently was I on 
the point of withdrawing my papers, telling him I would make 
mv complaint to the Chancellor and demand another Censor. 
But the remedy would have been worse than the disease. The 
more you change your Censors the more difficult they become. 
The last named, from the spirit of corps, or to make a merit of 
their exactness as well as the first, go on depreciating more and 
more the Work under examination, just as clothes-brokers, who 
observe a retrograde progress in their offers, all under the price 
which the first comer had fixed upon a coat. I was under the 
necessity therefore, whether I would or not, to consent to some 
retrenchments, particularly on the subject of the Clergy. I 
suppressed one article in my own opinion of very high impor- 
tance. I proposed in it, as a study equally conducive to the in- 
rerest of Humanity and of Religion, to oblige young Ecclesi- 
astics, destined to become Ministers of Charity, to spend a 
part of their probationary time and labour in Prisons and Hos- 
pitals, in order to their learning how to cure the maladies ol 


the mind, just as students in medicine are taught in the same 
places how to remedy those of the body. By means of agree- 
ing to make some other sacrifices, my theological Censor sent 
me my manuscript at the end of three months. He affixed not. 
a syllable of approbation to it except his signature ; but he shew- 
ed me at the same time one of a dozen lines, containing a gross- 
ly fulsome elogium, with these words : " Such is the approba- 
" tion I bestow on Works which give me satisfaction ;" it was 
prefixed to a new translation of Homer's Odyssey, which no- 
body reads. 

I recovered then my Studies of Nature from this inquisition. 
But I had not yet reached the period of my troubles j the next 
point was to get them printed. It was likewise extremely rea- 
sonable that, situated as I was, I should derive some pecuniary 
emolument from my long and painful labours. I applied ac- 
cordingly to a bookseller, a widow lady connected with the 
Court, whom one of my friends, who held considerable em- 
ployments under Government, had cried up to me as a person 
of strict integrity, and to whom he had given me a recommen- 
dation. She received me at first very coolly, on the proposal I 
made that she should advance the* cost of printing my book, and 
afterwards reimburse herself out of the sales ; but as soon as I 
mentioned my name and that of my friend, she assumed a smil- 
ing air, and congratulated herself on his having thought of her, 
to procure for her the offer of Works of character. I shewed 
her my manuscript, and requested she would inform me what 
the expense of the impression would amount to. She reckoned 
it would make six small volumes in duodecimo, and that I 
might venture on printing 1500 copies. She then gave me ;t 
memorandum of the expense of composing, of press-work, ol 
paper, of gathering, of warehouse rent, of stitching, of the al- 
lowance on the sale to country booksellers. I took down the 
particulars as she dictated them, and having examined them a: 
home, I found that I should still remain somewhat in her debt, 
even supposing the impression to go off rapidly. I then enter- 
tained thoughts of publishing at my own risk in three volumes, 
to diminish one half of the expense of stitching and of the abate- 
ment to the trade, calculated in my memorandum at 15 sols 
(7 l-2d.) a volume, which amounted on the whole sale to thir- 

j76 sequel to the studies of nature. 

ty-four per cent. All the money 1 had in the world was 60u 
livres (25/.) I found means, with some difficult), to h 
1200 more from certain opulent friends, and I had no doubt that 
with such a stock of ready money, which now amounted to 
more than a third of the expense, I might enter directly into 
treaty with a printer, and the rather, that I would give up the 
whole edition to him till he was completely indemnified. These 
conditions were still more advantageous than those on which 
booksellers deal, who generally settle with the stationer and 
printer by giving in payment notes at twelve and ev< n eigh- 
teen months ; but I forgot that I was only an Author. I went 
then to one of the most noted printers in Pim is, in the belief 
that I should have less difficulty to encounter with a wealthy 
and enlightened tradesman. He received me at firt:t with pro- 
found respect, and shewed me copies of all his finest editions, 
imagining I came to be a purchaser ; but no sooner had 1 open- 
ed my business, and enquired at what rate he performed print- 
ing, than he changed countenance. He deigned not to answer 
my question, but told me he printed only on his own account, 
and that his press was entirely devoted to works whose merit 
and success were already decided. A friend pointed out to 
me another printer, who had received a favourable impression 
of me, and who wished for nothing more than to enter into 
treaty on the subject. This printer acceded to every condition 
I proposed, and requested that I would put my manuscript into 
his hands, in order, as he said, to calculate how many sheets of 
letter-press it would make. He sent it back after a few days, 
with an intimation that he could not engage in it, because he 
was overtaken with a great press of business. I met with simi- 
lar treatment three or four times successively from printers of 
not the least celebrity in Paris. After having received my ma- 
nuscript they delayed putting it to the press under various pre- 
texts ; sometimes it was a wish to raise the price of it, sometimes 
that of the paper, and when I had agreed to all their demands, 
they restored it with infoimation that my Work was not adapt- 
ed to the taste in fashion, that they had communicated it to 
connoisseurs, that it never could succeed. When they saw it 
take with the Public, they thought proper to calumniate me, 
alleging that I had not treated them with sufficient confidence. 


These different obstacles, the detail of which I have curtail- 
ed, retarded the publication for three months longer. At length 
determined to confide no more in reputations so false, and to 
recommendations which have always involved ine in distress, 
I cast myself on that Providence which never deceived me. 
From an impulse of my own mind, I applied to a printing-of- 
fice, and having the felicity to address myself to a man of cha- 
racter, M. Bailly, I immediately struck a bargain with him and 
with the superintendant of his business, M. Didot the younger, 
in whom I met with an accommodation and a probity which I 
have every reason to celebrate. 

My Work being printed, I experienced new difficulties in 
getting it announced. I sent copies to the most popular periodi- 
cal publications, but as they wait, according to custom, for the 
decision of the public judgment, that they may conform their 
own to it, the very first among them gave no account whatever 
of it till four months had elapsed. They began with inserting 
certain anonymous satirical strictures upon it, and they rejected 
every commendatory criticism addressed to them ; they after- 
wards maintained perfect silence on the subjects which had 
given offence to Academies, and bestowed praise only on the 
style, to which they ascribed the whole success. It was far 
greater than I durst have expected. Piratical impressions were 
dispersed all over the country. I was informed from Marseilles 
that all the provinces were filled with those counterfeits, but 
surprise was expressed that not a single copy of the genuine 
edition could be got. It appeared that not only all die country 
booksellers had conspired toward effecting the ruin of an Au- 
thor who durst presume to have his Work printed at his own 
cost, but that the Inspectors, and even the Supreme Regulator 
of the Press gave their countenance to it. The inspector of the 
Press at Lyons having several times received orders to look af- 
ter certain well-known pirates, so far from disturbing them in 
their illicit trade, pitied them on the contrary, because my book- 
seller refused to make them the allowance which they expected. 
It is certain, notwithstanding that a multitude of those counter- 
feits of my Studies were in circulation among the booksellers of 
that Citv, and that one of them whom I have elsewhere named, 
had carried his assurance so far as to have them advertised for 

Vol. III. 3 B 


sale at his shop in the catalogue of Leipsic Fair. All my requi- 
sitions on the subject have been fruitless. To whom could I ap- 
ply for redress ? One of the principal booksellers of Marseilles, 
imported into that city a large bale of pirated copies of my 
Work which was seized; the Chancery ordered it to be confis- 
cated in favour of the book-trade of Marseilles, that is of the 
very pirates. I was well aware that an unconnected man had 
no chance of obtaining justice against one who belonged to a 
corps. I dreamed therefore of opposing the corps of literati to 
that of booksellers, but vanity disunites the former, and interest 
cements the latter. A young poet, member of several Lyceums 
and Academies, having come to pay me a visit, I talked to him 
of the benefit which might accrue to men of letters diffused in 
reputable associations all over the kingdom, if they would mu- 
tually watch over each other's interests, by setting their faces 
against piratical publications. This son of Apollo treated my 
idea with sovereign contempt. It was not in my power to 
make him comprehend that to live on the fruits of a man's own 
labour must be more honourable than to cringe to the great for 
a pension, and to confer benefits on booksellers more creditable 
than to receive them from such hands. 

Nevertheless from amidst so many thorns, I picked up many 
is and some fruit. Letters of congratulation crowded in 
upon me from every quarter. My ancient services, brought 
into view by popular favour, procured for me a small annual 
gratification, which the King from an impulse of his own bene- 
volence bestowed on me. These first fruits of fortune, joined 
with some others which had an appearance of solidity, and es- 
pecially the profits of two editions of my book, prompted me to 
realize a desire which I had long entertained. It was to go 
and prosecute my Studies of Nature in the bosom of Nature. 
I wished to make myself master of a little spot of ground, 
where, remote from men unjust and jealous, I could go on to 
amuse myself with determining the causes of the Tides, and of 
the Currents of the Ocean, which alternately flow from the ices 
of each Pole by means of the half-yearly action of the Sun. I 
had raised the evidence of that important truth up to demon- 
stration ; but I was astonished at the indifference of our Marine 
Boards, and of our Academies, respecting an object so deeply 


interesting to Navigation, and to the mutual commerce of 
mankind ; associations which have formed so many enterprises 
dreadfully expensive, and frequently useless to the Nation and 
to mankind. I wished farther to collect some new harmonies 
in the delicious study of plants, and, above all, to continue the 
Arcadia, the first book of which I had published. To these 
ideas of public felicity projects of personal happiness attached. 
The sentiment of this had all the sweetness of restoration to 
health. I was on the point of reducing all this to reality when 
the Revolution took place. 

Solicited with importunity by the people of the quarter where 
I resided, who entertained a high opinion of me because I had 
written a book, I made an effort on my health to assist at the 
first Assembly of our district. I there learned by experience 
that my Studies had neither diminished my infirmities, nor the 
Revolution inspired the citizens with wisdom. They all spake 
at once. I ventured to bring forward three propositions : The 
first, That no object should be publicly deliberated upon till 
three days after it had been proposed, that every one might pre- 
serve his liberty of judging ; The second, That votes should 
not be given viva voce, but by ballot, in order to preserve liber- 
ty of suffrage ; The third, That the National Assembly should 
be permanent, and it's members removable every three years, 
by taking in one-third of new members every year. They 
would not so much as take the trouble to discuss my proposi- 
tions except the master of a boarding-house, who combated the 
permanency of the Assembly, and who was afterwards named 
Elector. They had already conferred the same honour on me, 
but I gave in my resignation next day on account of the state 
of my health, both moral and physical. I had just experienced 
what I knew well enough before, that the People desire the 
public good, but that Corps aim only at private emolument. 
Besides, supposing my indispositions had permitted me to act, 
I should have been greatly at a loss what part to take. 1 was 
attached to the People from a sense of duty, and from a prin- 
ciple of gratitude to the King, on whose bounty I had subsisted 
for twelve years past. I had opposed aristocratic despotism, 
and I could not flatter popular anarcln-. 1 perceiv J among the 
leaders of the People men who had most amply profited by 


Court favour, and in the Court-party some who had most gross 
ly flattered the People. I knew them on both sides ,to he ac- 
tuated by ambition, that is, according to my doctrine, men of 
the most dangerous character. They know nothing of friend- 
ship or of equality, though the words are incessantly in their 
mouth: if you presume to walk by their side you become their 
enemy, and if behind them, their slave. One is obliged in their 
society to be a hypocrite, or professedly wicked. I did not wish 
to make myself a worse man, by labouring to make others bet- 
ter. There were likewise, in truth, at the head of the Revolu- 
tion men virtuous, disinterested, sage, enlightened, who, through 
the whole course of their life, had never deviated from their 
avowed principles ; but it was not easy to guess into what a 
train this new order of things, whose plan as yet had no exist- 
ence, would lead even them. 

All these changes produced no more illusion on my mind 
than that of the Theatre, where the same performers only change 
dresses and names. I found again in our new political order 
our ancient citizens, just as in our new geography of France her 
ancient limits. Men succeed each other like running waters, 
but they no more change their passions than the river does it's 
channel ; the same ambitions always displayed themselves, with 
this difference, that those of the little had surpassed those of the 
great ; all had struggled without respect for the laws, ancient 
and modern. I have myself been the victim of this more ways 
than one, first on occasion of a burying-ground adjoining to my 
garden, interdicted as a nuisance eight years ago, and seized by 
the Commune, who have made it a focus of putrescence by daily 
interments : afterwards on the subject of my Works, become a 
prey to pirates. To no purpose did I present my complaints to 
the Justice of Peace, to the Section, to the Municipality, to the 
Department ; what is still worse, an appearance of giving me 
redress was assumed, and the abuses were permitted to remain 
unreformed, though they directly attack the municipal laws, and 
the rights of personal property. The Law may appear deaf to 
the remonstrances of an individual, because it may be suppo- 
sed taken up with objects of greater importance ; but when once 
it has listened to them, found them just, and yet gives no redress, 
it falls into contempt from a belief of it's impotency. I have 


myself contributed towards covering it's weakness, by not laying 
my grievances before the Public. I considered the Law in the 
light of a wretched mother amidst ungrateful and disobedient 
children. But how could I have increased the number of them ? 
Whatever employment I had undertaken, I must have adopted 
the interests of a party, promised and deceived, observed abu- 
ses and overlooked them, and obeyed the People in every thing, 
in order to have the appearance of governing them. With so 
many reasons for keeping at a distance from our tumultuous 
Assemblies, I had at least as many for renouncing my intention 
of total retirement. Our plains were in a state of still greater 
agitation than our cities. A man ought never to reckon on hap- 
piness out of himself, and if there be for him an inviolable asy- 
lum, it can be no where but in his own conscience. I had been 
offered agreeable and peaceful retreats out of the Kingdom, but 
I could not have stood the reproaches of my own mind had I 
abandoned my Country in her state of crisis. Though it was 
not in my power to calm the spirit of anarchy which was sub- 
verting every thing, I could exercise some small influence over 
the minds of individuals, by tempering the ardor of one, by sti- 
mulating another, by consoling a third. We assign a value too 
high to public, and too low to the private virtues. In a storm 
no less skill is requisite to manage a gondola than the Bucen- 
taur. We must not form a judgment of the goodness of ma- 
chines from the magnitude of their movements : if the great pro- 
duce a greater effect than the small, it is only because their le- 
vers are longer. The same thing holds as to the virtues. It is 
unquestionably certain that if, at a critical period, every Citizen 
would re-establish order in his own house only, general order 
would speedily result from the prevalence of universal domestic 
order. I comfort myself therefore, remaining in my physical 
and moral solitude, with the persuasion that not having adopted 
the interest of a party, I was more in a condition to discover 
the national interest, and that if I was capable of promoting it, 
I could do so in a manner more lasting through the medium of 
the Press, which I had attempted successfully, than by means 
of speech which I had not much practised. 

In consequence of this, though my Studies of Nature had to 
me a charm inexpressible, I suspended them to engage in thos" 


of society. I wrote the Irishes of a Recluse. Of all my Works 
it is that on which I have bestowed most labour, and with which 
I am the least satisfied. My object in this undertaking was to 
reconcile the interests of a Prince who had laid me under obli- 
gations ; of a Clergy who had expressed for me something more 
than indifference, because I had refused to solicit benefits at 
their hand ; of the Great who had repelled me ; of Ministers 
who had deceived me ; of their flatterers who had calumniated 
me ; of Academies which had thwarted me. The time of pub- 
lic vengeance was come, and I could have blended my own 
with it, but faithful to my motto, I would not so much as re- 
store in my Wishes the articles which the Censor had retrenched 
in my Studies. The men of whom I had reason to complain 
were too miserable ; I chose rather to suppress some objects of 
national interest than gratify my private resentments. I pro- 
posed then to myself to preserve the ancient community of my 
Country, only by pruning it's great trees, to admit the air and 
the sun to the smaller. My wishes have been far exceeded. 
We have had lopping off by the head, plucking up by the root, 
and re-planting on a very fine plan no doubt ; but the trees are 
always the same. The old are incapable of taking root again, 
because they are old ; the young will be choked for want of be- 
ing properly disposed ; there is no hope therefore but from the 

A solid Constitution can be reared on no other foundation 
but that of a national education. Notwithstanding my ancient 
labours, I dared to undertake this, by following out the chain 
of natural laws, of which I had pointed out some links in my 
Studies. The Rights of Man are merely results from them. 
This great Avork requires time, repose, health and talents ; all 
of them blessings which are not at my disposal ; but at least I 
have endeavoured to fulfil the duties of a Citizen. I have not 
even lost sight of transient circumstances which I thought might 
prove of some utility. When after the King's return from the 
frontiers the Kingdom divided into two parties, the one of which 
wanted to change France into a Republic, and the other to pre- 
serve Monarchy, and every thing wore the appearance of civil 
and foreign W'ar, I hastened to recal the People to a sense of 
the ancient obligations which they lay under to their Monarch, 


and the Monarch to a sense of what he owed to his People. I 
sent my observations, supported by a powerful recommendation, 
to the Editor of the Mercury and of the Monitor, but he did 
not think proper to publish them.* They met with no better 

• I did not then know that this Editor had any influence over those Jour- 
nals, as lie has since avowed. He has at the same time published, in a Pe- 
tition to the Electors of Paris, that he had a great deal over men of letters, 
and that he had even M. de Buffon m his pay 

In that same little Work he has the goodness to sympathize with me as 
the victim of the piracies of booksellers, whose douceurs it is true I never 
would receive. But what appeared to me very strange in it, is a proposition 
he brings forward of making the fortune of Authors, by securing- to them the 
property of their Works for fourteen years : ** on condition that at the tcr- 
" mination of such period any bookseller might be at liberty to print them." 
He had done me the honour previously to communicate this proposal to me in 
conversation. I said to him : " It is just as if the gardeners of Boulogne de- 
" manded that the fine gardens which you have there should fall into their 
" common stock, because you have enjoyed them for more than fourteen years 
" past. The property of a literary work is still more sacred than that of a 
" garden." He replied, " That such a Eaw existed in England, and that he 
" meant to apply for one of a similar nature, in the National Assembly." I 
do not know whether such a Law actually exists, but on the supposition that 
it does, we ought to go to our neighbours in quest of good laws and not of 
abuses. The English, shut up in an island, have undoubtedly more abundant 

. of preventing the introduction of counterfeits, but this does not hold 
as to France. It is certain that our ancient Administration, with their spies, 
their guards, their inspectors, and the whole of their despotism, never could 
prevent the practice. How then could the new one carry the point, when 
liberty was enthroned, as at this day, when cities have no gates, no barriers, 
no custom-house officers ? Thus then an Author, after having been for four- 
teen \ ears a prey to pirates must terminate his course by falling into the jaws 
of booksellers. A merchant, accordingly, a husbandman, a manufacturer, 
shall be able to acquire, by their labour, a property transmissible for ever to 
their children, and a literary man, who has frequently deserved better of his 
Country, must be excluded from the same rights : he would see himself strip- 
ped of the properly of his Works at the end of fourteen years: the pursuits 
of his youth would no longer belong to him in his old age : in defiance of tire 
laws, a parcel of scoundrels would gulp up the first fruits of them, and under 
the protection of law, opulent booksellers would finish the plunder by giving 
splendid editions of his Works. The Assembly is too wise not to reject the 
infamous proposition whose injustice I have just demonstrated ; it ought on 
the contrary to thunder it's indignation against those who employ so many 
artifices to plunder literary men of the slowly productive fruits of their tedi- 
ous labours. The leaders of Administration have hitherto pretended that they 

ised not the means of preventing piracies. There is one method, and 
simple one, punihh the sellers of them. Booksellers ought not to be 


reception from another Journal of very extensive circulation. I 
then experienced what I knew beforehand, that there are very 
few public papers at the service of a man who does not belong 
to any particular corps. Having, however, addressed my ob- 
servations to the Compiler of the Paris Advertiser, they were 
published in time sufficient to produce a good effect even in the 
National Assembly. I have since inserted them toward the be- 
ginning of the Advertisement prefixed to my Studies of Nature. 
They contain nothing very remarkable, except the circumstance 
to which I had destined them, and the authority of Fenelon and 
of the ancient Laws of Minos respecting the duties of Kings, 
perfectly conformable to the decrees of the Constituent National 

Since that epocha, I have employed myself in digesting some 
ideas relative to our Constitution ; they are a natural sequel to 
the Wishes of a Recluse. I have been so much the more en- 
couraged to produce the second, that many of the first have been 
realized by the Assembly. Nay, others of them appear to have 
been neglected merely on account of embarrassing circumstances 
which attached to particular cases. Such is that of the impost 
of surplus rate, on great territorial estates, which would have 
become an obstacle to the sale of the national property. This 
object merits all the attention of the present Legislature, if it 
means to give opposition to the progress of an aristocracy which 
formerly subverted Greece and the Roman Empire. 

When my Wishes of a Recluse appeared, they pleased but a 
very small proportion of Readers. They were by no means 
agreeable to the Clergv and Nobilitv, because I seemed to them 
to have extended much too far the rights of the People. They 
would have been acceptable to the People whose rights I main- 
tained, if, at that time employed in overcoming the resistance of 
the corps which oppressed them, they had not learned to extend 
them as far as their power. The Constituent Assembly, sup- 
ported by popular favour, has in it's decrees gone much farther 
than I did in my Wishes. Those who then thought them too 
bold, have since found them very moderate. On the other hand, 

allowed the plea of ignorance : every man in the trade should be capable of 
distinguishing 1 a spurious from a genuine edition of a book, as every gold- 
t to know the distinction between copper and gold. 


our Legislators were placed in a most embarrassing 'situation. 
They were, relatively to the State, tumbling into ruin, like ar- 
chitects surveying a crazy building which it is proposed to re- 
pair. The hammer once applied to the walls, it is found neces- 
sary to pull down the fabric to the foundation. It would have 
been desirable, no doubt, that a single architect had by himself 
traced the whole plan of re-construction, for the sake of greater 
unity of design. Notwithstanding the different views of our 
Legislators, and the difficulties of every kind which they had to 
encounter, there are parts of our Constitution so excellent, that 
it may be affirmed to be the most conducive to the happiness of 
the People at large, that has hitherto appeared in Europe. 

It is with the first plans of Empires as with those of our an- 
cient Cities ; most of the streets assume a winding direction. I 
have never even seen any high-road in the open country drawn 
in a straight line, from the bias which is natural to man : they 
all proceed in a serpentine progression. This demonstrates, that 
it is not easy to advance straight forwards, even for those who 
mean to do so, and that to draw his path by the line a man has 
need of invariable points in his horizon. Those of the earth are 
to be met with only in the Heavens, as they know who have 
made the tour of the Globe. 

There is reason to believe that our new Constitution will he 
durable, because it is in a great measure founded on the Rights 
of Man, which are themselves derived from the celestial and 
immutable Laws of Nature. 

All the miseries with which the State was overwhelmed arose 
solely from the private ambition of corps. The monied men had 
got hold of her finances ; the Parliaments, of her justice ; the 
Nobility, of her honour ; the Clergy, of her conscience ; the 
Academies, of her understanding. All of them held the national 
body fast bound, without the power of making the slightest 
movement but for their particular interests. 

Happily for the Public they did not harmonize. While I 
were a-quarrelling the Nation disengaged her hands, and in part 
burst asunder her chains. The princpal remaining fetter to be 
shaken off is that of gold ; gold alone giving now-a-i 

s of ambition, ambition of t 
■■If into that of having gold. It is in on! 

Vol. ML 


get gold that the plough and the ship are put in motion, that a 
man becomes an Artist, a Magistrate, a Priest, a Soldier, a 
Doctor, that Nations make Peace and War, and our Estates- 
General themselves assembled. Gold is the prime mover of the 
body social, just as the Sun, whose emblem and perhaps whose 
production it is, constitutes that of the Universe. But as the 
Sun itself would destroy the world did not Divine Wisdom re- 
gulate it's effects, so gold would destroy society did not a sound 
policy direct it's influence. By policy I mean not the modern 
art of deceiving mankind, which is a great vice, but, according 
to the etymology of the word, the antique art of governing 
them, which is a great virtue, and is an emanation from Sove- 
reign wisdom. 

The greatest mischief which gold can produce in a State is 
when it accumulates in a small number of hands ; it is as if the 
rays of the Sun were to fix in the Torrid Zone, and abandon 
the rest of the Globe to darkness and ice. It is necessary there- 
fore to keep a watchful eye over men who possess the means of 
attracting to themselves all the gold of the kingdom. These 
are Ministers of State, men of overgrown capitals, the Nobility 
•and Clergy : Ministers, by means of the Royal influence ; ca- 
pitalists by that of their money ; the Nobility, by that of arms ; 
the Clergy, by that Of conscience. We have to oppose to Mi- 
nisters, the National Assembly ; to monied men, the depart- 
ments ; to the Nobility, the national guards ; to the Clergy, 
the municipalities. It is undoubtedly in the view of balancing 
the forty-four thousand Signiories and church preferments in 
the Kingdom, which were at the head of the military and spiri- 
tual power of France, that the forty-four thousand municipali- 
ties were created. The day will undoubtedly come when the 
ancient and modern powers shall amalgamate, and have no ob- 
iect but one, the felicity of Man ; but, in expectation of the 
period when all resentments shall be extinguished, and the na- 
tional interest shall have taken place of the separate interests of 
corps, we are going to suggest some considerations respei 
the dangers we have to apprehend, and the remedies with which 
we are pi'ovided against them. They are consequences of the 
very decrees of the Constituent Assembly, which did 


long enough to provide for every case. The more abundant 
It's harvest has been, the more has been left us to glean. 

Of Ministers and of the National Assembly. 

One of the most judicious decrees of the Constituent Na- 
tional Assembly, is that which declares the person of the King 
inviolable, and Ministers alone responsible for his mistakes. 
I shall not here repeat what I have said elsewhere respecting 
the personal character of the King : it is sufficient to hint that 
he was the prime mover of our liberty. He well deserved 
therefore, on more accounts than one, the honourable preroga- 
tive which renders his person sacred as the law itself with the 
execution of which he is intrusted. But it belonged to him 
besides in quality of King ; Kings are deceived only by those 
who surround them. Nero himself would have been constrain- 
ed to act virtuously, had the Roman Senate punished his crimes 
in his Ministers. 

Ministers alone then have the means of maintaining a struggle 
with the Assembly, by opposing to it part of the national force, 
of which the principal nerve is money. 1. By a dangerous ap- 
plication of the revenues of the civil list, which amount to thir- 
ty millions a year, (1, £50,000/.) 2. By the distribution of ma- 
ny lucrative employments, which may procure for them crea- 
tures innumerable both without and within the Kingdom. 3. 
Because the period of their administration not being limited, 
they possess a great advantage over the members of the As* 
sembly, who are changed every two years. Thus they have 
over the National Assembly a prcponderancy of money, of cre- 
dit, and of time, which alone operates many revolutions. 

It is necessary therefore, I. That the National Assembly 
should look out sharply over the disbursements of the civil list, 
in cases where it might be employed to corrupt it's own mem- 
bers, or even those of the department Assemblies, municipal or 
primary. This offence is the crime of high-treason against the 
State ; a corrupting Minister ought to be declared still more 
culpable than a corrupted Representauvc. 

II. The National Assembly ought likewise to pay particular 
ion to the patriotic charad employed by Mi- 


nistry as servants of the public. It ought especially to be ob- 
served, conformably to the Constitution, that in the choice of 
such persons regard be had to ability and not to birth. If this 
is not vigilantly looked after, it may shortly happen that most of 
those employed in the functions of the State, Officers in the 
Army and Navy, as well as Consuls, foreign Ministers and 
Ambassadors, selected by ill-intentioned Ministers, may find 
themselves in a condition to effect a counter-revolution, by ope- 
ration conducted in concert both within and without the king- 
dom. It would be easy for them to render this a desirable ob- 
ject to the People, by contriving to produce a scarcity of corn, 
by encouraging highway robberies and religious quarrels ; for 
the People, fatigued with the recent concussions of the Revolu- 
tion, and beholding their calamities increase, would not fail to 
impute them to the National Assembly which they have in- 
trusted with the care of remedying them. They would be dis- 
posed this way so much the more violently, that they are natu 
rally given to change, and that living, especially in the capital, 
on the luxury of the great who have there fixed their habita- 
tion, they are with respect to these in a state of natural depen- 
dence, arising from the opulence of the one and the necessities 
of the other, a relation which does not hold between these last 
and the poor and transient members of the National Assembly. 
This disposition to general mutability and discontent may be 
farther powerfully stimulated by factious and mercenary jour- 
nalists. Before the Constitution was completed, every writer 
undoubtedly had a right to discuss it ; but now that it is sanc- 
tioned by the King, received by the Nation, confirmed by the 
second Assembly of it's Deputies freely elected, no farther dis- 
cussion ought to be permitted, except with a view to ameliora- 
tion. Finally, the Constitution may be subverted by a multi- 
tude of unprincipled indigent wretches, most of whom would 
sell their share of public liberty for a crown-piece : they might 
be made so much the more easily the principal instruments of 
a counter-revolution, that the)- recollect their having been pow- 
erfully efficient in producing the first. All these considerations 
must appear of serious importance to the Assembly. They will 
prevent these evils by stopping up the source. It ought to be 
decreed, that Ministers shall be responsible for the conduct of 


the public servants whom they nominate, as they are for the 
orders of the Sovereign. They should be made to answer at 
once for the emanation of those orders and for their execution. 
III. It appears to me that our Deputies remain too short time 
in place. I could have wished that instead of two years, three 
at least had been the term of their service. Many of them in 
fact relinquish substantial and lucrative situations for the sake 
of a transitory benefit which scarcely indemnifies them for the 
sacrifices which they have made. Such are, among others, Gen- 
tlemen of the Law who have supplied so many assertors of pub- 
lic liberty. I could likewise have wished that a third part of 
Assembly had been renovated every three years. Appre- 
hension was entertained, we are told, of their forming them- 
selves into a perpetual aristocracy. But may not their total re- 
volution involve that of the Constitution? A new Assembly 
loses a great deal of time, before it gets into the train of doing 
business. In troublous times a total renovation may become 
extremely dangerous. The vessel of the State, by changing her 
crew in stormy weather, may be overset under sail, or driven 
out of her course. Every movement is an object of apprehen- 
sion in critical seasons. Would a State make a complete reno- 
vation of her army in presence of the enemy, to replace it with 
inexperienced troops ? How then dares she, in presence of so 
many enemies to her best interests, substitute in room of an As- 
sembly who has defended them, one entirely new, most of 
whose members know only those of the departments which 
have elected them ? Many months must elapse before they can 
enter into ideas of public business, and put it in to a regular train. 
It is possible, in my opinion, to avoid the danger of a perma- 
nent aristocracy on the one hand, and of a sudden and total re- 
volution on the other, in renovating the members of the Assem- 
bly by a third part every year, in other words, each department 
should even' yea* turn out a third of it's old Deputies, and 
elect a new third to supply their place. There would thence 
result two great benefits to the Nation ; it would be able to ex- 
clude such of the Deputies as might lie under suspicion of be- 
ing corrupted, without inflicting a stigma upon them, as their 
dismission would be a result of the very law under which they 
had been elected, and it would preserve perpetually the right of 


watching over the National Representatives, and of kc< 
alive public spirit in the Assembly. The duration of the As- 
sembly might even be lengthened out to five years, by renewing 
the fifth part of it every year. 

Such are the precautions which I deem necessary to the du- 
ration of the Constitution, and to give to the National Assembly 
a preponderancy which may render it respectable in the eyes of 
the People, and enable it to maintain a struggle with advantage 
against Ministers of State. It is to be hoped however that the) 
will one day become superfluous. Many of our Ministers ap- 
pointed by the King, are animated by his patriotic spirit, and 
feel that their glory, like his, consists in the national felicity. 

There is one method, in my apprehension, to direct their love 
of glory. Various decrees have been made as a guard against 
their ill-intentions, but not one in favour of their good offices. 
This is pointing them out to the Nation as enemies, and tempt- 
ing them to become so. They are too much to be pitied in 
having every thing to fear from a Nation that mistrusts them, 
and very little to hope from a King who has no longer blue rib- 
ands and dukedoms to give away. I could wish therefore that 
the Nation would assume the prerogative of rewarding them in 
a manner worthy of herself. Thus, after ten years service, the 
Assembly might take a review of their conduct, and in the 
event of it's being found constitutional and irreproachable, de- 
cree them the honour of a statue. It might be placed at the 
basis of the King's, raised under the cupola of a temple sacred 
to Memory and decreed in the same manner. Then, instead ol" 
seeing our Kings on horseback, elevated on a pedestal, flanked 
by Nations enchained, or by allegorical figures of the virtues, 
we should behold them on foot, surrounded by their good Mi- 
nisters, of whom one might hold Neptune's trident, another the 
caduces of Mercury, a third the thunder of Jupiter, or, what is 
still better, his horn of plenty. To these symbols might be ad- 
ded inscriptions and bas-reliefs, representing the principal acts of 
their administration. This monument, accessible on every side, 
would figure wonderfully well in the centre of a public square, 
or on the banks of the Seine, according to the predominant in- 
clination of the Prince. The People form a tolerably accurate 
judgment of the character of several of their Kings from the 


situations in which their statues are placed: they believe that 
Louis XV. was fond only of hunting, because he is out of the 
City : Louis XIV. of magnificence, because he is surrounded by 
the grand Hotels of the Place de Vendome and that of Victory; 
Louis XIII. of the Nobility, because he is in the Place Royale, 
in the Marais the ancient residence of the Court ; Henry IV. 
of the People, because he is in the centre of that popular walk, 
the Pont-Neuf. I should however deem Henry much more re- 
spectable, did we see at the four angles of his pedestal, instead 
of so many slaves in chains, the sage Duplessis Mornay, the up- 
right Sully, the virtuous La Noue, and some others of the King's, 
friends who, like himself, loved the People. Our capital is by 
no means deficient in respect of new situations. It's market- 
places will present some that are very interesting, to such of our 
Monarchs as shall place their delight in the midst of the plente- 
ousness of their subjects. 

Of Monied Men and the Departments. 

Gold is the sole mover of our politics ; in order to have it, 
Powers forget the very first principles of morality and justice. 
However difficult it may be in these times to refute errors sanc- 
tioned by public opinion and reduced to practice, I shall begin 
this paragraph by suggesting some reflections which may serve 
to guard us against them at least for the future. The subject 
which I mean to treat is the invitation which the Minister of 
Finance addressed to the Citizens, to advance the fourth of their 
revenue as a patriotic contribution. 1. This invitation was sub- 
lcptitious, because that was made a civil obligation which bore 
the name of an offer purely voluntary. 2. The Law promul- 
gated on that occasion is impolitic, because men ought never tc 
be tempted to balance between interest and conscience ; and it 
in fact produced a great number of false declarations. The As- 
sembly acted very wisely in not permitting the farther aggrava- 
tion of false oaths. 3. This Law is inquisitorial ; it obliges 
Citizens publicly to disclose the secrets of their fortunes, after 
the Exchequer has for so many ages abused their confidence, 
and when it still continues the abuse by making an obligatory 
( of an act of good will ; it reduces such of them as appa- 


rently are living at their ease, but in reality are not in a conch 
tion to contribute, to the cruel alternative of publishing their in- 
digence, or of passing for bad Citizens. These considerations, 
so moral in their nature, induced Louis XIV. to prevent the 
execution of a similar project. With all his despotism, he 
durst not penetrate into the secrets of families. He had his 
qualms of conscience, says the Duke of Saint-Simon. 4. This 
Law is inequitable, for it does not pi'oportion the contribution 
to the fortune of the persons assessed. A man who lives in 
superfluity is more in a condition to pay the fourth of his in- 
come than one who has barely what is necessary. Nay more, 
he who possesses a revenue of a thousand livres of ground rent, 
is as rich again as he who is only a life annuitant to that amount, 
and he again is still more so than one who derives the like in- 
come from an employment which he may lose immediately after 
having paid his contribution. All the three nevertheless, though 
of very unequal fortune, contribute equally, which is contrary 
to the very spirit of the Law. 5. Finally, from all these inco- 
herences this has resulted, that the wealthiest capitalists who 
keep the greatest part of their fortune concealed in their port- 
folios, have contributed the least, if a judgment is to be formed 
from their declarations. It was however, in part, to clear the 
interest of their claims upon the State, that a patriotic contri- 
bution has been demanded. There can be no doubt that the 
patriot Minister who proposed the measure, and the Assembly 
which voted it, were actuated by the best motives : but amidst 
the troubles which pressed upon them, they were incapable of 
foreseeing hazardous consequences. They could have settled 
it on the same basis as those of municipal imposts. God forbid 
that I should suggest to bad consciences the means of eluding 
•he Law ; every good Citizen is bound to support the Laws, 
even when unjust. My only v. ish was that our faults past might 
serve as lessons for the time to come. The Constituent Assem- 
bly has been oftener than once hurried on by the influence of 
the monied interest. Such was that which obliged every Citi- 
zen to pay the direct impost of a mark in silver, as a qualifica- 
tion to be elected one of it's members. By abolishing it, the 
Assembly has demonstrated ; rent standard 

from that of money, for appreci. tnd that there - 



wanting to it's Constitution other moving principles besides 
those of" fortune. 

Now that capitalists are deprived of the means of turning 
their capital to account, by the suppression of venal employ- 
ments, of public loans, and by and by of the agio of the great 
assignats by the issuing of small ones, there is reason to appre- 
hend that their avidity may gulp up all the lands of the king- 
dom. I know no other method of prevention but the imposition 
of a surplus rate which shall increase in proportion to the accu- 
mulation of territorial property. I have proposed that mode in 
the first part of this Work, and it has given umbrage to the 
rich, though it go to the promotion of even their private in- 
terest, but the safety of the State depends upon it. I have de- 
monstrated in several passages of my Studies themselves, that 
excessive acquisition of territorial property had occasioned the 
ruin of Greece, of the Roman Empire, and of several kingdoms 
of Africa, if the testimony of Pliny and Plutarch is to be be- 
lieved. I have there observed, that they had contributed in a 
great measure to that of Poland, and I have pointed out the 
miseries which they had produced in France. These miseries 
will continue to increase, now that a great many persons who 
•were already rich in land, acquire national property by the re- 
imbursement of the employments which they had purchased^ 
The abolition of the rights of seniority will indeed one day sub- 
divide large inheritances into equal portions among the kindred, 
but the families will not be the less rich for that, and their aris- 
tocracy is as dangerous as that of corps. Among the Romans, 
inheritances were equally divided, but they were not the less on 
that account ruined by vast territorial possessions. 

There is, on the subject of the sale of national property, an- 
other great abuse to be reformed ; it is that of monopolizing 
capitalists, who purchase in wholesale to sell in detail. They 
frequently make a profit of from 15 to 20 per cent., without un- 
tying their purse-strings, as I have heard one of them boast. 
The departments, I am well aware, tolerate this species of abuse 
in the view of facilitating the sale of extensive landed estates ; 
but they would accomplish the same object by subdividing them 
into small lots of twenty or thirty acres. They would obtain 
more purchasers, and would obtain a better price for the benefit 

Vol. III. 3 D 


of the Nation. Monopolists would infallibly be deterred from 
bidding by laying on the surplus rate, which would increase 
progressively, according as small properties accumulated in the 
hands of a single individual. 

It is the avidity of great landed proprietors which first in- 
troduced, and has so long kept up over Europe, slavery in agri- 
culture. Where in truth are we to expect to find free men dis- 
posed to cultivate the earth entirely for the benefit of another ? 
In Russia, lands derive their whole value from the number of 
pedants on them. There are, in that Country, proprietors pos- 
of domains as extensive as Provinces, and from which 
the> draw no profit whatever for want of slaves: To great pro- 
pria. ors v>e are indebted for the introduction of the slavery of 
the Negroes into America. The first Spaniards who made the 
conquest of the Antilles, of Mexico and Peru, divided the lands 
among themselves, and reduced their inhabitants to slavery to 
cultivate them, but especially for the purpose of working their 
mines of gold and silver. Notwithstanding the political modi- 
fications of die King of Spain in favour of the wretched Indians, 
his soldiers served them as he himself had # served their Princes. 
They plundered and destroyed them for the most part ; they 
afterwards made good the deficiency by slaves dragged from the 
Coast of A frica. The French did not employ them in the An- 
tilles till the year 1635, after the re-estabiishment of the India 
Company. Thus the Spaniards lie under the reproach of hav- 
ing been the first Europeans who shed the blood of Americans, 
and who introduced the slavery of the Negroes into America. 
One crime always produces another. Three descriptions of 
miserable beings have been produced by this wicked policy, the 
subjugated Indians, the enslaved Negroes, the tyrannical Whites. 
Of these undoubtedly the whites are the most miserable : by a 
very remarkable re- action of Divine justice, they have found 
their punishment in that very gold which they so eagerly covet- 
ed. They live, in the first place, amidst their brethren, copper- 
coloured and black, in a state of perpetual terror of their uniting 
to plunder and exterminate them. Then they are under the 
necessity of rivetting their chains by all the horrors of super- 
stition, but they themselves have the yoke rivetted round their 
own neck. They are tyrannized oyer by Monks, whose thirst 


for gold is as insatiable as their own, and who strip them of it 
by scaring them with the terror of the satellites of the Inquisi- 
tion in this world, and of devils in the next. Gold and silver, 
watered with human tears, issue from their mines only to enrich 

On the other hand, the sabres of Buccaneers are no less for- 
midable to them than the legends of Missionaries. A handful 
of adventurers, allured by that same gold, has frequently diffu- 
sed dismay over those rich countries whose wretched inhabi- 
tants are destitute of patriotism. Our colonies do not suffer ca- 
lamities so oppressive, because they are poorer. The National 
Assembly has made their happiness an object of attention, by 
restoring to Mulattoes and free Negroes the admission into Co- 
lonial Assemblies, which Louis XVI. had granted them, and 
which belonged to them as a Natural right. Is it not reasona- 
ble then, that free men who cultivate the ground, who pay the 
taxes levied upon it, and who defend it in time of war, should 
have some share in it's Administration ? Be their colour what 
it may, are they not Citizens ? The white settlers had stripped 
them of the prerogatives of citizenship, in consequence un» 
doubtcdly of their proud alliances with our noble families, but 
they subsisted in the Portuguese colonies. I have seen men of 
colour in the full enjoyment of them in our own Island of Bour- 
bon, whose first inhabitants married the negresses of Madagas- 
car, for want of white women, and left to their mulatto children 
their property, together with all the rights of citizens. The 
French families which have since settled there, and among 
which there are several of noble extraction, disdained not to 
form alliances with them. It is very common to see there ne- 
phews and nieces, cousins of both sexes, brothers and sibters, 
fathers and mothers, of different colours. Nothing appeared to 
me more interesting than this diversity. I have distinguished 
in it the power of love, which brings into contact what oceans 
and the zones of the world had separated. Those families at 
once white, mixed and black, united by the tics of blood, re- 
presented to me the union of Europe and of Africa much bet- 
ter than thos£ fortunate lands where the fir and the palm-tree 
blend their shades. It is much to be regretted that, under the 
influence of groundless apprehension, the Constituent Assembly 


should have abolished, by it's decree of September 1791, the 
justice which it had done to persons of colour in the Antilles, 
and have granted to white men only the right of constituting 
themselves : it was looking upon them as in some measure ali- 
ens to the Kingdom. They will one day perceive the necessity 
of forming an intimate union with them, from the impossibility 
of, in any respect, a self-sufficient independence of them ; but 
before every thing else, they ought to attract persons of colour 
to unite with them : in this their security and their prosperity 
are at once concerned. It is necessary, for the same reason, that 
(hey mitigate the hardships of their miserable slaves, till the 
time come when national wisdom itself shall devise prudent 
means to restore them to liberty. I have indicated some of 
them : this grand revolution is not to be effected at once, but 
gradually, and by giving a proper indemnification to the propri- 
etors of slaves. 

But it is not sufficient to people our islands with free and 
happy blacks ; we must introduce into them white labourers, 
who are more industrious. This affects equally the interests of 
our Colonies and of the Mother Country. This is not all ; the 
introduction of white labourers into America is a necessary con- 
sequence of our new Constitution. Agriculture and Commerce 
having been in France set free from fetters, it follows that po- 
pulation must considerably increase at home. On the other 
hand, the gulphs which absorbed it being filled up, such as the 
unmarried communities both male and female, and the continual 
wars excited by the ambition of the Nobility and Monarchy, 
whose prejudices are going to be extinguished, it is a matter of 
absolute necessity that population should rapidly increase ; so 
much the more that love has there an unbounded empire, from 
the temperature of the climate, from the fertility of the soil, 
from public spectacles, from the use of wine, and from the at- 
tractions of the female sex. To these ancient and modern sour- 
ces of population must be added that of the influx of foreigners 
who are already coming to settle among us, from the attraction 
of our new Constitution, which grants full security for liberty of 
conscience. It is therefore a matter of urgent importance to find 
a vent for the superflux, out of the Kingdom, and there is no 
one more commodious, or more within our reach, than our Co- 


lonies. We must therefore introduce into them the agricultu- 
ral labour of white men : for if this method is not employed, 
France, before the expiration of half a century, will not be able 
to support her inhabitants. We shall see among ourselves, as in 
China, circumscribed by her laws, mothers exposing their chil- 
dren, and all the other crimes which flow from the excess of an 
indigent population. The abolition of the slavery of Negroes, 
and the introduction of the agricultural labour of whites in A- 
merica, flow therefore from the interest of whites in France, 
were they not consequences of the Rights of Man, which are 
the basis of our Constitution. 

Certain ill-intentioned men have pretended to allege that Eu- 
ropeans are incapable of cultivating the burning soil of the 
American Islands. A reply from matter of fact is the most ir- 
resistible. The good Spaniard, Bartholomew de Las Casas, had 
brought to St. Domingo itself labourers from the Mother Coun- 
try, who would have done very well there, had they not been 
destroyed by the Caraibs, provoked by the pillage of the Span- 
ish soldiers, who made a conquest of the island, only to ravage 
it. We see every day, on the ports of our Colonies, where the 
heat is much more powerful than up the Country, our carpen- 
ters, our stone-cutters, employed in labours much more severe 
than those of the culture of coffee, of cotton, and of the cocoa, 
which women and children are brought up to. I have seen in 
the Isle of France white men level parts of forests with their 
own hands, and clear away the ground. They had not however 
been brought up to employments so laborious, and some of them 
had even been officers in the service of the India Company. 
The climate of St. Domingo is I grant much warmer, but the 
ancient pirates and buccaneers of that Island were white ; not- 
withstanding their excessive fatigues they enjoyed good health, 
and lived to a great age. Instead of our slaves, they had young 
articled or apprenticed white servants, sometimes of good fami- 
ly, who engaged to serve them for the term of thirty-six months, 
a circumstance which procured them a corresponding name. 
These young people supported labours incomparably more op- 
pressive than those of our slaves, of which we have full assur- 
ance from authentic relations still existing. The ancient In- 
dians who cultivated the Antilles, as well as the lands of Peru 


and Mexico, were of a temperament much more feeble than 
the Europeans who exterminated them. Finally, do we not 
see, by a just re-action of Divine vengeance, Europeans support 
in Morocco a slavery more cruel than that of the Negroes, un- 
der the sky of Africa, still more intolerably scorching than that 
of America ? I have composed on this subject a little Drama 
in the view of bringing back to humanity, by means of feeling, 
men whom cupidity prevents from returning to it in the track 
of reason ; but I am convinced it would be easier for me to get 
it represented at Morocco than at Paris. 

It is our interest then, nay that of the Creoles, to introduce 
into our islands white agricultural labourers, in order to furnish, 
in the first place, the means of subsistence to our compatriots, 
and afterwards of spreading themselves over the vast solitudes 
of America which are in the vicinity. I know well that seve- 
ral European Powers have taken possession of them. I shall 
riot examine whether that possession be lawful, and whether the 
same right which they assumed as their authority for robbing 
the ancient proprietors of their inheritance, might not serve in 
it's turn to strip them of their usurpations. Bad principles 
ought not to be founded on bad examples. But, however re- 
spected the right of conquest may be in Europe, it is certain 
that the right of Nature is more ancient. In order to an Eu- 
ropean Prince's taking possession of a foreign country, where 
men devoid of mistrust received his ships with kindness and 
hospitality, it is not sufficient for him to get a plate with his 
name engraved on it, buried clandestinely, or to have a cross 
erected, emblazoned with his coat of arms, by a missionary 
priest, who worships it in chanting a Te Deiim, and persuading 
the honest savages who stand expressing their astonishment at 
the ceremony, that this cross will preserve them from every 
kind of evil. Neither is it sufficient for him to construct along 
a coast, for fifty leagues together, a battery of cannon, surround- 
ed with ditches and palisadoes, to tell the World : All the Con- 
tinent is mine. The Earth' belongs not to him who takes for- 
cible possession, but to him who cultivates it. The Laws of 
Nature are founded on truth in general as in detail. I saw one 
day without the gate de Chaillot, a peasant sowing pease on a 
spot of ground which had lain long uncultivated; I asked if it 


belonged to him : " No," said he ; u but every one is at liberty 
" to sow land which has remained without cultivation for more 
" than three years." I cannot tell whether this usage is found- 
ed on the Civil or Roman Law ; but it undoubtedly is a natural 
right. GOD formed the Earth expressly to be cultivated : 
every man, therefore, has a right to settle on a desert. Besides, 
the interest of the Kings of Spain and Portugal is concerned to 
invite into their immense and solitary American Domains, the 
overflowing inhabitants of Europe, to increase the number of 
their subjects. If they do not now allure them thither in the 
capacity of husbandmen, they will one day behold them land in 
the form of conquerors. 

Till the period arrive when the People of France shall find 
a vent for her future population in her Colonies and the Conti- 
nent beyond them, the Colonies themselves must be prevented 
from intercepting the means of subsistence to the People of 
France. They draw at this day from the American Islands a 
great many articles of their daily consumption ; the principal of 
which are sugar, coffee, tobacco and cotton. There is scarcely 
a laundress but what lays out on these different commodities at 
least the half of her earnings. The monied men monopolize 
them on their arrival in our ports, and thereby enhance the 
price. The Departments ought to keep a vigilant eye over 
such abuses, and if possible to destroy the causes of them. It 
is a great error in politics to place the Mother Country in a 
state of dependence on her Colonies. 

The Departments ought therefore to encourage the culture 
of bees, for the purpose of replacing the use of sugar by that 
of honey, so highly valued by the ancients for it's sanitary qua- 
lities, but rejected by the moderns from a prejudice under 
which they labour that it has a medicinal flavour. It is the 
quintessence of flowers. From the consumption of it an inun- 
dation of wealth would cover our plains, where so many plants 
produce their ethereal oils in vain. Our peasants would em- 
ploy themselves in the easy and harmless management of bees, 
who in workshops where freedom ever reigns, are never forced, 
in order to make sugar, to labour under the lash of the whip, 
like the wretched Negroes. 


Coffee likewise might perhaps be replaced by some vegetable 
substance of our own climates. I have frequently wondered that 
the berry of a species of jasmine, dry, coriaceous, of a very 
bitter savour, which no insect will touch, which remained lost 
for ages in the forests of Arabia, should have become, bv the 
operation of roasting, and it's combination with sugar and wa- 
ter, a beverage of such universal use in Europe, that without 
it whole Nations, up to the very extremities of the North, could 
not believe it possible to breakfast or to digest their dinner ; that 
for it's consumption there should have been fitted up in every 
City an infinite number of apartments, where the Citizens as- 
semble, and decide, as they drink it, the fate of Empires ; that 
great Cities should flourish by the sale of it, and populous Colo- 
nies by it's culture. Of a truth, the grateful States of Greece 
would have dedicated a temple to the Dervise who first disco- 
vered the use of it, as they had done to Ceres, to Bacchus and 
to Minerva, who had taught them how to extract flour from a 
grass, wine from the fruit of the vine, and sweet oil from the 
bitter olive. There may be perhaps such a berry lost in our 
woods, despised even of the animal tribes, which in process of 
time shall administer an additional comfort to human life. It 
is the business of the Departments to encourage, by premiums, 
experiments on such as might supply the place of coffee. This 
fruit of luxury having become a necessary aliment to the Peo- 
ple, it would be of importance at least to find an equivalent more 
substantial in their own territory. When a young man has 
wasted his time and fortune by pursuing a mistress, he is brought 
back to economy and his family by marrying him to a woman 
of character. But nations are always sufficiently young to run 
after novelties, and they are frequently too old to renounce in- 
veterate habits. 

Of these one of the strangest, and the most difficult to be 
eradicated, is the use of tobacco. There is no one so univer- 
sally diffused over the globe. Tobacco comes originally from 
America, and savages first taught us to smoke it ; but it is 
smoked at this day from Norway to China, and from Archan- 
gel to the land of the Hottentots. In Europe great quantities 
of it are consumed in snuff. It was gold dust to our capitalists 
of France, who had got the farming of it. They sold it for 


more money an ounce than the pound had cost them in the leaf. 
I have seen a poor labourer expend every day in tobacco the 
fourth part of his wages. Since the Revolution it's commerce 
and culture are become free in France, where it grows of an 
excellent quality : it will accordingly fall in price, and the con- 
sumption will prove a farther benefit to Agriculture. It were to 
be wished that we could in like manner naturalize the sugar- 
cane and the coffee plant. Sicily and some parts of Italy might 
admit of this, but the climate of France forbids it. I have re- 
marked in my Studies, that Nature had rendered the whole 
Earth capable of producing universally the same substances, 
with this difference, that she varies the vegetables which bear 
them according to difference of latitude. The savages of Ca- 
nada make sugar with the sap of the maple, and the blacks of 
Africa produce wine from the juice of their palm-trees. The 
taste of the Haselnut is perceptible in the great nut of the cocoa- 
tree, and the smell of many aromatic herbs of our own plains in 
the spice-bearing trees of the Moluccas. Nature, in general, 
places the consonances of the trees of the Torrid Zone, in the 
shrubbery and herbage of the temperate Zones, and even in the 
mosses and mushrooms of the icy regions. She has, toward the 
South, sheltered the fruits from the heat by raising them aloft 
on trees ; and as we advance toward the North, she has shelter- 
ed them from the cold, by lowering them on herbs and grasses, 
which besides, being intended to live one Summer only, have 
no fear of Winter. It is therefore in the humble classes of our 
annual and spontaneous plants that we shall be able to find pro- 
ductions equivalent to those of the magnificent vegetables of 
the South. 

Cotton, the use of which is so extensively diffused among the 
people, furnishes anew proof of these compensations of Na 
It grows in the forests of the torrid regions of Africa and Ame- 
rica, on tall thorny trees ; in India on lofty shrubbery ; and in 
Malta and the islands of the Archipelago, on a herbaceous 
plant. We can supply the want of it by employing flax, an an- 
nual herb which comes originally from Egypt. It has long suf- 
ficed, together with the wool of our flocks, to clothe us e\ 
luxury* Our women are still more dexterous in spinning it, 
than the females of India in drawing out threads of cotton. It 

Vol. III. 3 E 


is worked into cloth which far surpasses muslin in fineness. A 
considerable wager was laid on this subject in Bengal, between 
two agents of the English and Dutch East-India Companies. 
The Dutchman undertook to prove the affirmative, and the Eng- 
lishman denied it. The latter produced in support of his bet, 
a piece of muslin delicately fine ; but the other carried it. He 
obtained from his own Country a piece of cambric which, in 
the square inch contained more threads than a similar space of 
muslin. Threads of flax in our laces are much finer than those 
of the most curious muslins. It is possible to work it into cloths 
damasked, sattined, transparent, capable of receiving every 
manner of colour. Nevertheless women rich and poor give the 
preference to cottons. Rich women injure the industry of our 
own manufacturers, by the importation of cottons from India ; 
and the poorer women, who ape the other, injure themselves 
by drawing from a foreign country the raw material of their 

Government at the outset thought of favouring the culture of 
cotton in our Colonies as well as it's importation into France. 
Our monied men soon derived such profits from it by the estab- 
lishment of innumerable manufactures, that most of the women 
of lower rank, as well as their children, habitually wore stuffs 
of this sort. The use of them is far from being wholesome. 
They are wonderfully well adapted to the winters of countries 
whose inhabitants go almost naked the rest of the year ; but 
they are too warm for our Summers, and too cold for our Win- 
ters. Their use especially is very dangerous in Winter. They 
catch fire very easily ; they are one of the most frequent causes 
of our conflagrations, which often commence on a spark falling 
on a stuffed counterpane, or on a curtain of cotton. The fire in 
such cases is propagated with amazing vapidity. To my know- 
ledge several children and old people have been burnt alive, 
from having fallen asleep by their own fire-side in clothing of 
this sort. The whole world knows that Stanislaus, the old King 
of Poland, perished in this manner. "Wool is liable to none ol 
these inconveniencies : very light stuffs may be made of it for 
Summer wear. The Grecian and Roman ladies, who dr 
so gracefully, wore robes of it at all seasons. I could wish that 
the Revolution, which has produced so many changes in 


laws, might produce some in our manners, and even in our 
dress. That of men, among us, is open on all sides, and cut 
short. There is nothing on the contrary at once so warm and 
so light, so commodious and so dignified as that of the ancients. 
If our females wish to engage the men to adopt it, they have 
only themselves to adopt the appropriate habit of the Grecian 
women, who never dressed but in linen and woollen. There 
will result from it much benefit to health, and to the respectable 
appearance of a whole Nation. Our Agriculture, our Com- 
merce and our Manufactures will derive an immediate advan- 
tage from it. Linen rags will multiply, and contribute to the 
support of the paper-manufactory, the first material of which 
begins to grow scarce. It is impossible to supply it's place by 
cotton rags, though the Indians indeed make very beautiful pa- 
per of them, if the cloth has not been dyed. I shall not exa- 
mine how far the Mother Country is a gainer on the balance 
of her commerce with the Colonies ; but I see it entirely in then- 
favour. We supply them with wine, with corn, with flour and 
salted provisions ; but we receive from them coffee, sugar, in- 
digo, tobacco, cotton, cocoa-nuts, the consumption of which is 
incomparably greater ; besides, they will not admit either our 
modes, or our liberal arts. The creolian women have their par- 
ticular style of dress, and send to India for the greatest part of 
their stuffs. I never saw in the Isle of France a single house 
which contained a picture, or so much as a print ; neither did 
I find books there except in the hands of some Europeans, and 
in a very small number. Arts and Literature nevertheless fur- 
nish enjoyments to the rich, and consolations to the poor. Na- 
ture teaches them to Man, and they bring Man back to Na- 
ture. Our colonies have no object but one, to amass wealth ; 
and it is evident that they draw from us a prodigious quantity, 
from the enormous fortunes so rapidly made in them. Let them 
keep their money ! The happiness of a people is not to be esti- 
mated by the piastres of their traders, but by the means they 
possess of feeding and clothing themselves. Now, I repeat it, 
there is a political error of the first magnitude committ* d, in 
permitting the raw material of the apparel of the people of 
France to issue, as at this day, from her Colonies in the inlands 
of A merica, as well as the sugar and coffee on which they break - 


fast, and the tobacco which they are consuming every hour ol 
the day. Nothing more is now wanting but to raise our corn 
there to reduce us to a state of complete dependence. We have 
accordingly seen, by the violent remonstrances of our traders in 
favour of the inhuman slave-traffic, in the face of the decrees of 
our National Assembly, that our commercial sea-ports had 
ceased to be French, and were transformed into Americans. 

Let us save at least the sound part of the Nation, by raising 
a bulwark between the principal article of it's subsistence and 
the avidity 7 of overgrown capitalists. The sole cause of popular 
insurrections is scarcity of bread, even in political and religious 
quarrels. The People never intermeddle with the conduct of 
the Gods but when they are abandoned by Ceres. There is 
but one method to keep them quiet, it is to give them a constant 
supply of bread at the same price, and to establish for this effect, 
in each Municipality, magazines of corn which should contain 
enough for the consumption of at least two years ; it will then 
be for every Department to institute a commerce of thai 
commodity, by selling to their neighbours, or even exporting, 
the surplus of this provision. The People will sec the circula- 
tion without the least uneasiness, from an assurance that a supply 
is laid up for their own necessities. I have already brought 
forward this proposition, but I cannot help pressing it in this 
place, from a conviction of it's importance ; it is the only means 
of preventing seditions. Bread is as necessary to the People 
as the air they breathe. What would the rich say, if the ah 
they respire were sometimes on the point of being totally sup- 
pressed to them ? In what mortal inquietude would they live, 
were there naturalists who, with pneumatic machinery, could 
condense or rarify it at pleasure ? Would they not consider such 
persons as the most dangerous of tyrants, to keep them inces- 
santly in dreadful suspense between life and death ? In this 
light the People view those who are engaged in the commerce 
of grain. 

In vain you tell them of the distress of the neighbouring Pro- 
vinces, of the scarcity that is felt in the Capital: Will they take 
a greater interest in these than in the necessities of their own 
children ? Besides they are no longer the dupes of that preten- 
ded humanitv, which has so often served as a pretext for the 


dangerous commerce of corn. When they see it exported 
from their markets, they suspect, and with too much reason, 
^hat it is for the purpose of raising the price. It is a very cul- 
pable negligence therefore on the part of Administration, du- 
ring several centuries, not to have established magazines of grain 
in the Provinces, and reduced bread to a fixed price. Their 
object was to dispose of the Peoples' food, in order to govern 
them by famine, as well as of their fortune by imposts; of their 
life by foreign wars, and of their conscience by religious opi- 
nions. Such have long been the abuses of our odious system 
of politics ; it is high time to set about a reformation of the 
most glaring of them. I f there be a motive to induce the Peo- 
ple to effect a counter-revolution, it is the dearness of bread ; it 
was this alone which produced the Revolution, in defiance of 
the very persons who stupidly believed they could prevent it, by 
starving the People. 

I shall here subjoin a few reflections respecting the use ol 
bread, become of such absolute necessity all over Europe. \Y r ho 
would believe that it is an aliment of luxury ? Of all those which 
are served up on the table of man, though it be the most com- 
mon, and even when markets are at the lowest, there is no one 
which costs so dear. The grain of which it is made, is of all 
vegetable productions that which demands most culture, ma- 
chinery and handling. Before it is cast into the ground, there 
must be ploughs to till the ground, harrows to break the clods, 
dung-hills to manure it. When it begins to grow, it must be 
weeded : when come to maturity, the sickle must be employed 
to cut it down ; flails, fanners, bags, barns to thresh it out, to 
winnow it and to store it up ; mills to reduce it to flour, to bolt 
it and to sift it ; bakehouses where it must be kneaded, leaven- 
ed, baked and converted into bread. Verily, Man never could 
have existed on the Earth, had he been under the necessity oi 
deriving his first nutriment from the corn plant. It is no where 
found indigenous. Nay, it's grain, from the form and size, ap- 
pears much better adapted to the beak of granivorous birds than 
to the mouth of man. Not so much as the twentieth part of 
mankind eats bread. Almost all the people of Asia live on rice, 
more prolific than the corn plant, and which needs no other 
preparation but to be stripped of it's pellicle, and boiled. Africa 


lives on millet ; America on manioc, potatoes and other roots. 
Even these substances were not the primitive aliment of Man. 
Nature presented to him at first his food already dressed in the 
fruits of trees ; she placed principally for this purpose, between 
the Tropics, the banana and the bread-fruit ,• in the Temperate 
Zones, the ever-green oak, and especially the chestnut tree ; and 
perhaps in the Frigid Zone, the pine, whose kernels are eatable. 
But without quitting our own climates, the chestnut tree seems 
to merit the particular attention of our cultivators. It produces, 
without giving any farther trouble, a great deal more substan- 
tial fruit than a field of corn of the same extent as it's branches ; 
it affords besides, in it's incorruptible timber for carpenter's 
work, the means of building durable habitations. Our depart- 
ments ought therefore to multiply a tree at once so beautiful and 
so useful, on the commons, on heaths, and by the high-roads ; 
ihey ought likewise to promote in the same places, the culture 
of every species of tree which produces alimentary fruit, as well 
as that of pot-herbs of the best sorts. For this purpose it would 
be necessary that every Department should have a public gar- 
den, in which attempts might be made to naturalize all the fo- 
reign vegetables, capable of furnishing new means of subsistence 
or of industry, in order to supply all gardeners with the seeds 
and plants of them for nothing. 

There is no occasion to recommend to the Departments the 
interests of the poor. Most of the ecclesiastical endowments 
have been bequeathed in their favour. They possess still more 
rights in these than the capitalists. It is to be wished that the 
whole of these were not to be sold out, and that some parcels of 
them were to be reserved in each Municipality, and under it's 
direction, to form in their favour useful establishments upon 

It is not sufficient to provide for the physical necessities of 
the inhabitants of our plains, their manners must be likewise 
softened. Our peasants are frequently barbarous, and their 
education is the only cause of it ; they frequently beat without 
mercy their asses, their horses, their dogs, and sometimes their 
wives, because they themselves were treated so in their infancy. 
Fathers and mothers, under the deception of ctrtain pretended 
religious maxims, powerfully recommend to schoolmasters the 


correction of their children, in other words, to bring them up as 
they themselves have been : thus they mistake their vices for 
virtues. It is therefore essentially necessary to banish from the 
schools of children the infliction of corporal chastisement, as 
well as the superstition which devised it, and which, not satisfied 
with torturing their bodies, stings their innocent souls with the 
scorpions of hell ; it propagates among the children of shepherds 
the first principles of that terror which is one day to cover the 
children of Kings with it's awful shade. It is in the simple 
minds of the peasantry that dexterous Monks have scattered 
abroad so many legends, which have procured them, from the 
fears of this world and the next, so much riches over the coun- 
try, and so much power around thrones. The reason of peasants 
ought to be illumined because they are men. Let them be in- 
structed in the knowledge of a God intelligent, provident, most 
bountiful, most gracious, most affectionate, and alone worthy of 
being loved above all things in nature which is his workman- 
ship, rather than in stones, wood, paper, without motion, with- 
out life, the work of men's hands, and but too frequently the 
monuments of their tyranny. Their manners ought to be polish- 
ed, by introducing among them a taste for music, for dancing 
and rural festivity, so well calculated to recreate them after their 
painful toil, and to make them in love with labour. Thus thev 
will be induced to renounce their barbarous sports, the fruit of 
their cruel education. There is one, among others, which strikes 
me as detestable j it is that in which they take a live goose, sus- 
pend her by the neck, and contend who shall first bring hei 
down, by alternately throwing a stick at their victim. During 
this long agony, which lasts for hours together, the wretched 
animal tosses about her feet in the air, to the great satisfaction 
of her executioners, till at length one of them, a better marks- 
man than the rest, by completing a separation of the vertebra, 
brings to the ground the bruised and palpitating carcass ; he 
than carries it off in triumph, and devours it with his companions. 
Thus they transmit into their own blood the substance of a dead 
animal tortured into madness. These ferocious and silly diver- 
sions are frequently celebi-ated in the avenues leading to the cas 
ties of the Nobility, or in the vicinity of churches, without tin 
least interruption from the Lord or the parish Priest • 


often forbids the young girls to dance, and permits the youag 
men to torment innocent birds to death. It is that in our Cities, 
the Priests hunt from the churches women who present them- 
selves there in hats ; but they respectfully salute men who come 
dressed in swords. Many of them consider it as a heinous of- 
fence to go to the Opera, and with delectation contemplate at a 
bull-baiting, that companion of the husbandman, torn in pieces 
by a pack of hounds. Every where, wo to the weakest ! Every 
where barbarism is a virtue with those in whose estimation the 
graces are crimes. 

The cruelty practised on animals is only an apprenticeship to 
the science of tormenting men. I have endeavoured to find out 
the origin of the atrocious custom among our peasantry of tor- 
turing to death the goose, a harmless and useful bird, and which 
sometimes renders them the service of the dog, being like him 
susceptible of attachment, and capable of exercising vigilance. 
It appears to me that we must refer it to the first Gauls, who, 
after having made themselves masters of Rome, failed in their 
attempt to scale the Capitol, because the sacred geese of Juno, 
which could not sleep there for want of food, by their cackling 
roused the guards, who were lulled to rest by watching and fa- 
tigue. Thus the geese saved the Roman Empire, and defeated 
the enterprize of the Gauls. Plutarch relates that in his time, 
under Trajan, the Romans continued to celebrate the deliverance 
of the Capitol by an anniversary festival, on which they carried 
through the streets of Rome a dog hanged, because their dogs 
slept during the escalade of the Gauls, and a goose placed on a 
rich cushion, in commemoration of die vigilance of those birds, 
to which they were indebted for their safety. It is not unlikely 
that the Gauls, on returning to their own country, adopted the 
contrary practice, and every year hanged up French geese, out 
of resentment at the Roman geese, without reflecting that they 
might themselves expect from them similar good offices in simi- 
lar circumstances. But man frequently condemns in his enemy 
what he w r ould approve in his friend. Another custom is in- 
troduced to support the first : it is that practised by our peasants 
of kindling great bonfires about Saint John's day, perhaps in 
memory of the burning of Rome, which happened at this sea- 
son, according to Plutarch, that is about the summer solstice. I 


am well aware that religion had in some measure consecrated 
the fires of Saint John, but I believe they are of antiquity more 
remote than the Christian iEra, as well as many other usages 
which Christians have adopted. 

Whatever be in this, the Departments ought to abolish from 
among our peasants those inhuman pastimes, and^substitute in 
their room such as exercise both body and mind, like those in 
use among the Greeks. Such are wrestling, running, swimming, 
the use of fire-arms, dancing, and above all, music, which has 
such power toward polishing the human mind, But we hope to 
treat these subjects more profoundly, when we engage in a plan 
of national education. 

Our men of capital may powerfully second this moral revo- 
lution in rural life, by combining their means with the illumina- 
tion of the Departments. Instead of monopolizing the money 
and the bread of the People, whose curses they draw down upon 
themselves, and sometimes their vengeance, it is easy (or them 
to lay out their money on undoubted security, with profit, ho- 
nour, and pleasure. They could establish country banks, for the 
purpose of lending, at a moderate interest, small sums to the far- 
mer, who, for want of a little ready money, frequently sees his 
property go to ruin. They could themselves drain marshes, clear 
waste lands, multiply flocks, establish manufactures, render 
small rivers navigable ; instead of acquiring immense tracts of 
landed property producing a small revenue while in the hands 
of their great farmers, because the half must be every year left 
in fallow, they ought to divide them into small portions of four, 
of six, of ten acres, which will yie/id a perpetual produce, be- 
cause a single familv can cultivate them. They may plant them 
out into orchards, enclose them with quickset hedges, less ex- 
pensive, more durable, more agreeable and more beneficial to 
agriculture, than the long and gloomy stone walls of parks ; they 
may rear on them little smiling and commodious mansions, el- 
even simple cottages, and sell or let them to tradesmen who may 
come thither in quest of health and repose. The simple tastes 
of the country will thus be introduced into the cities, and the 
urbanity of cities will communicate itself to the country. Our 
capitalists might extend their patriotic establishments beyond 
seas, open new channels to commerce and fisheries, discover 

Vol. III. 3 F 


new islands under the fortunate climate of the tropical regions, 
and there plant colonies exempted from slavery. The greatest 
of islands in the bosom of the Ocean, if after all it be only an 
island, New-Holland, invites them to complete the discovery of 
it's coasts, and to penetrate into it's immense solitudes, where 
the foot of European never yet travelled. They may, with 
French liberty and industry, found on it's shores a new Batavia, 
which shall attract to itself the riches of two worlds ; or rather 
like new Lycurguses, may they banish money from it, and, in 
it's place, introduce the reign of innocence, concord and hap- 
piness ! 

Of the Nobility and the National Guards. 

The ambition of the Nobility had acquired entire possession 
of honours ecclesiastical, military, parliamentary, financial, mu- 
nicipal, and even of those pertaining to men of letters and art- 
ists. Letters of Nobility were requisite to a man's being a Bi- 
shop, a Colonel, or even a Subaltern Officer, in the Army, a 
Privy Counsellor, the Mayor of a Corporation ; they were ob- 
tained as a qualification for filling the place of Sheriff of Paris ; 
they would soon have become necessary towards obtaining a 
seat in our Academies, which had all of them Noblemen, or pre- 
tenders to Nobility, at their head. M. le Clerc had become M. 
le Comte de Buffon, and Voltaire, M. le Comte de Fcrney: others 
limited their ambition to the riband of St. Michael ; all our no- 
ted literary characters' aimed at present or future Nobility. 
Poor John- James alone v^W-contented to remain a man. Be- 
sides, he had not the honour of belonging to any one Academy. 

A Nation consisting of Nobles only, would quickly terminate 
it's career in the loss of it's Religion, it's Armies, it's Justice, 
it's Finances, it's Agriculture, it's Commerce, it's Arts and it's 
Illumination : and would substitute in place of these, Ceremo- 
nies, Titles, Imposts, Lotteries, Academies and Inquisitions. 
Look at Spain and a part of Italy, particularly Rome, Naples 
and Venice. The French National Assembly has laid open the 
path of honour to every Frenchman ; but in order to keep in it, 
he must run the race himself. Liberty is nothing but a perpe- 
tual exercise of virtue. It is by reposing on corps that citizens 


the habit, and very soon the rewards of it. If so many Bi- 
shops and Colonels have been so easily stripped of their credit 
and their places, it was because they transferred the discharge 
of their duties from themselves to their subalterns. It was the 
habit of administering their alms by the hands of the Clergy 
which impoverished the People, and enriched so many religious 
houses. It was by getting themselves replaced in the military 
service by soldiers that the Citizens themselves. had destroyed 
the Executive Power, and that the regiments had seized it, for 
the profit of the Nobility. It was by discharging this duty in 
person that the Spartans maintained their liberty, and by the 
devolution of it on mercenary soldiers that Athens lost hers. It 
It is necessary therefore that the French Citizens should them- 
selves serve. I have proposed, in my Wishes, the means of ea- 
sily keeping up in France a very formidable army, which shall 
not cost the Country a single farthing in time of peace. It is 
by instituting in the cities and villages military exercises, a- 
musements, and prizes among the young people. Thus they 
will be formed to subordination, without which it is impossible 
to have either Army or Citizens. Nothing but obedience to the 
laws can give security to public liberty ; it is the office of virtue 
and not of ambition to train men to it. 

It was the ambition of the Nobility which had engrossed 
every thing, and which scorned to give up a single point, that 
had brought the State to the brink of ruin, and has issued in 
their own destruction. In vain have they assembled on our 
northern frontier, and flatter themselves with the hope of forc- 
ing their way back into France in the enjoyment of their ex- 
clusive privileges, by the assistance of foreign powers. It is 
not probable that any one of them imagines it has a right to 
prevent the French Nation from framing for herself whatever 
Constitution she likes best. All Europe has regarded with ad- 
miration Peter the Great polishing his barbarous Empire, and 
reforming his Clergy and Boyards, who had seized all authori- 
ty. Would our admiration of him have been diminished, had 
he brought back a corrupted people towards nature, and had he 
royed the corps which opposed his plans of reform, he, who 
broke his own guards, and, like another Brutus, inflicted the 
:nt of death on his own only son, for having conspired 


against the Laws which he had given to his Country ? What a 
Prince has done, assuredly a Nation is able to do. The sove- 
reignty of a Nation resides in itself, and not in the Prince, who 
is only it's sub-delegate. It is impossible too frequently to re- 
peat that fundamental maxim of the rights of mankind : " Kings," 
says Fenelon, " are made for the People, and not the People for 
" Kings." The same thing holds good of Priests and Nobles. 
All the orders of a Nation are subordinate to it, just as the 
branches of a tree are, notwithstanding their elevation, to the 
stem which supports them. The French Nation has accord- 
ingly been able to suppress the order of Nobility, and it's ec- 
clesiastical orders which dared to shew a spirit refractory to the 
Laws, without putting it in the power of neighbouring nations 
to say a word on the subject. In a storm a vessel moored on a 
dangerous coast, cuts her cables when she cannot get up her 
anchors. Thus the Nation, to save the national body has cut 
asunder the voice of prejudice which was dragging her to de- 
struction, and which she had neither skill nor leisure to disen- 

How many great Princes have attempted to do as much, and 
durst not, not being seconded by the popular power ! The Em- 
peror Joseph II. attempted similar reforms in Brabant, and 
failed. Can our emigrated Nobility believe that his august 
successor, the sage Leopold, that new Marcus Aurelius, that 
friend of mankind, who in his Tuscan dominions had opened 
every road to merit ; that a King of Prussia, who has himself 
passed through every military rank when Prince Royal; that 
the Empress of Russia herself, that rival of Peter the Great who 
stripped his Nobility of the prerogatives of their birth, and ex- 
hibited the example of it, by relinquishing that of the Throne, 
and by sinking himself into a drummer and a carpenter ; can 
they believe, I say, that all these Sovereigns are to coalesce for 
the purpose of forcing the French to re-establish their ancient 
abuses, and to give, as in times past, all employments to venali- 
ty, to intrigue and to birth I It is absolutely impossible. Ii 
neighbouring Princes keep up considerable armies on their 
frontiers, it is simply to prevent the French Revolution from 
penetrating too rapidly into their dominions, in order to shun 
the disorders which have accompanied it. If the Empress of 


Russia is making to our emigrated Nobility particular tenders 
01 service, and is supplying them with money, it appears ex- 
tremely probable that she wishes rather to allure them to settle 
in her States, than that she means herself to make an impression 
upon ours. In truth the French Noblemen, instructed by cala- 
mity, would contribute not a little to the civilization of her 
Country, just as the Swedish officers, did who were transported 
into Siberia after the battle of Pultowa. 

But the homage which I owe to truth, and the pity which I 
feel for the unfortunate, constrain me here to warn our exiled 
nobless, that most of them would be objects of great compas- 
sion in Russia ; first, from their peculiar mode of education, 
which, arming them from infancy against each other, would not 
afford them among their compatriots themselves that support 
which the unfortunate of the same Nation might expect, espe- 
cially when expatriated. I had the experience of this oftener 
than once. The greatest enemies which Frenchmen have in 
foreign countries, are Frenchmen ; their jealousy is a result 
from their ambitious education, which, from childhood, says to 
each of them, but especially to men of noble birth, Be foremost. 
It is true the necessity of living with men, and especially with 
women, spreads a varnish of politeness over this maleficent in- 
stinct, and obliges a Frenchman of family, who is inwardly 
burning with a desire to domineer, to appear continually ani- 
mated with a desire of pleasing ; but his brilliant talents only 
excite against him the jealousy of foreigners, whose vices shew 
themselves undisguised. They detest equally his gallantry and 
his point of honour, his dancing and his duelling. It is there- 
fore a melancholy prospect for a Gentleman to pass his life in a 
strange land, an object of jealousy to his compatriots, and of 
hatred to the natives. I say nothing of the rigor of the mili- 
tary service in Russia, where subordination is such, that a Lieu- 
tenant must not sit down in presence of his Captain without 
permission ; nor of the mediocrity of the appointments, in a 
climate where civilized man has so many wants. These incon- 
veniences, which I myself have experienced, are so insupport- 
able, that most of the Officers whom I have seen pass into that 
country, of noble extraction or not, have been reduced to the 
situation of Ochitels, or governors to children in the families of 


Russian Noblemen. It is of a truth one of the least wretched 
resources of that country : but can it be palatable to a man of 
noble birth, who left his Country merely because he could not 
domineer over his compatriots at home ? Must he imitate Via- 
nysius the tyrant of Syracuse, who, stripped of his sovereignty, 
assumed the employment of school-master at Corinth, and hav- 
ing lost his Empire over men contrived to acquire one over 

Neither shall I say any thing respecting the severity of the 
climate in Russia, for it is a consideration of no weight with the 
ambitious : to live at St. Petersburg or in St. Domingo, to serve 
under Russians or to tyrannize over Negroes, is all one to most 
men, provided they are in the road to fortune. It deceives us 
frequently in these countries as in others. But when a man, to 
indemnify himself for the injustice of fortune, wishes to throw 
himself into the arms of Nature, it must be peculiarly hard upon 
a Frenchman expatriated in Russia, to compare Winters of six 
tedious months, during which the whole face of the Earth is 
covered with snow and dusky fir trees, with the mild climate of 
France, and her fertile plains clothed with orchards, vineyards 
and meadows. It is painful, on seeing enslaved peasants driven 
to labour by the rod, to call to remembrance the gaiety and the 
liberty of his compatriots; to talk of love to shepherdesses who 
understand not what you say, and whose hearts feel no recipro- 
cal emotion. It is a gloomy reflection that his own posterit} 
will one day be blasted by the same slavery, and that he himseli 
must never more see the places where he learnt to feel and to 
love. I have seen Frenchmen in Russia, of a superior rank in 
the army, so struck with recollections of this kind, that they 
said to me : " I would rather be a common soldier in France 
" than Colonel of a regiment here." 

Not that civilized countries are exempted from suffering, and 
this of the most painful sort. Philosophy undoubtedly is able 
to dwell any where, and, if good laws are wanting, may enjoy 
more happiness in the very marshes of Kamtschatka, in the 
midst of a dog-kennel, than in the bosom of cities become a prey 
to anarchy. 

But, noble Frenchmen, wherefore add to the evils which' men 
may occasion, those which Nature has not inflicted upon you I 


The Nation, you say, has been guilty of injustice to you : Why 
punish yourselves for this ? She has deprived you of your pre- 
rogatives, but she has not taken away from you her climate, her 
productions, her arts, her illumination, nor any one of her most 
valuable possessions. You mean to avenge yourselves for the 
injuries you have sustained ; your country-seats have been burnt 
to the ground : Will the burning of villages re-build them for 
you ? Men of family have been massacred ; Will the slaughter 
of citizens restore them to life ? Believe no longer the false pro- 
mises of your orators. Your hostilities will only serve to ag- 
gravate your distresses, just as your resistance has done. A 
corps cannot successfully oppose a whole Nation. Do not ima- 
gine it is in your power to excite civil war in France : there are 
abundance of patriotic Nobles in the Kingdom to combat the 
aristocratic Nobility. Are you going besides to take up arms 
against that Royalty from which your privileges are derived, and 
against a King who, in compliance with the general wish of 
France, has sanctioned the Constitution to which you refuse 
submission ? The second National Assembly has proved the 
lawfulness of the first. You owe more to jour Nation than to 
your Order ; the maxim of the sage Fenelon is not a factious 
sophism : " A man owes more to his Country than to his Fa- 
" mily." Will you call in the powers of Europe to attack yours ? 
They will not espouse your quarrel. First, they do nothing for 
nothing, and you are without money and without credit. Will 
you promise them to dismember France in their favour, where 
you had not the power of maintaining your own ground ? They 
would be much more afraid of seeing their own subjects adopt- 
ing the French laws, than they could hope to see France sub- 
mitting to those of Germany or of Russia. The Revolution 
would penetrate into their Dominions by means of the very sol- 
diery employed to subvert it. What temptation could be held 
out to induce them to enter France ? The plunder of Paris. But 
the frontiers of the Kingdom are hedged round with fortresses, 
defended by a multitude of regiments and of national guards, 
and there are in the interior a million of armed citizens ready 
(o re-place them. Would those Powers say to their troops, as 
an inducement to fight in support of foreigners who never did 
thing for them : " Go and re-establish the French Nobilitv 


" in the right, claimed by every Nobleman from his birth, of 
" domineering over men ? If you are victorious, you acquire 
" the honour of subjecting the French to a yoke similar to that 
" which you yourselves wear. If you perish, you die faithful 
" to your Religion, which enjoins you to obey, and forbids you 
" to reason." France, on the contrary, would say to her Citi- 
zens : " You are accused by the Nobility of Rebellion, but that 
" imputation falls upon themselves : Rebellion is the resistance 
" of individuals or of corps to the national will. Rebellion is 
" the subversion of the laws, and Revolution is that of tyrants. 
" The Nobility are the persons who want to be such in France, 
" by arming against her King legions of foreign soldiers. Go 
" and fight them. If you come off victorious, you secure for 
" ever the liberty of your fortune, of your talents, of your con- 
" science : if you die, you perish in defending the rights of Hu- 
" man Nature. Your cause is the most just and the most sa- 
" cred for which a People ever contended : it is that of GOD 
" and of Mankind." 

Gentlemen of France, will you rush upon destruction in de- 
fiance of the abuses of which you yourselves have so frequently 
complained ? The Nation, you say, has deprived you of your 
honours. It is for the sake of those who have honour, and who 
do not wish to usurp the honour of another, that she has willed 
it to be the privilege of every Frenchman to raise himself by 
his own merit. Place yourselves in the rank of her Citizens : she 
has elevated those of your order, who have distinguished them- 
selves by their virtues, to the stations of President, of Com- 
mandant, of Mayor, of Deputy' to her Assembly; to them she 
has confided her dearest interests ; it is for you particularly that 
she has been labouring. The ancient Government reserved it's 
honours for the great and the rich exclusively ; it is now in your 
power, by your virtues, to obtain that which they acquired only 
by dint of gold and intrigue. 

If there be no longer Nobility from inheritance, there ever 
will be personal Nobility; besides, the condition in which we 
are born has an influence on our manners. Commerce inspires. 
the love of money ; the bar, chicane ; the arts dispose to arti- 
fice, and rude labours to vulgarity. The Nobility, of the an- 
cient times of chivalry, distinguished themselves, by their gone- 


rosity, their candour, their politeness. Noblemen! who are 
their descendants, add to these patriotism and intelligence, and 
the people of France will advance to meet you. You complain 
of their anarchy, it is your insurrection on the frontiers which 
keeps it up. He who sets his face against the Laws, cannot ex- 
pect protection from them. 

Patriotism produced the Revolution and will maintain it : 
patriotism it is which, uniting every order of Citizens, banished 
from among them the fatal prejudices of their ambitious educa- 
tion. It has cemented into one body, at once, those whose du- 
ty it was to suggest counsels, and those who were to execute 
them ; it has scattered to the winds all the distinctions of rank 
and estate. We have seen Noblemen receiving orders from 
shopkeepers, Priests from laymen, Counsellors from attorneys : 
we have seen soldiers, without pay, passing indifferently from 
the rank of officer to that of private ; ready at all times, by 
night and by day, to quit their business, their pleasures, their 
families ; proposing to themselves no other recompense but that 
of serving their Country. Thus were ye formed, virtuous Na- 
tional Guards of Paris. Sometimes, combatting Aristocracy, 
you have disarmed it without vengeance ; sometimes, resisting 
Anarchy, you oppose to it an insurmountable bulwark. Neither 
the flattery of courtiers, nor the insults of the populace, have 
been able to make you deviate from your principles of modera- 
tion. The only object you have kept in view is the public 
tranquillity. Generous inhabitants of Paris, under your pro- 
tection the French Constitution was formed. Your example 
has been followed by all the Municipalities of the Kingdom ; it 
will extend still further ; benefits propagate themselves as well 
as absurdities. Our grandees, in their vain luxury, had adopted 
the riding-jackets, the horse-races, the hunters, the polished 
steel of England; you, with much greater wisdom, have taken 
for your share her liberty. Already your Constitution, like the 
dove escaped from the ark, is taking a flight over the whole 
Globe; already it hovers in company with the Eagle of Poland ; 
it carries as an olive-branch the rights of mankind ; this is die 
standard of Nature, which is universally inviting the Nations to 
liberty. In defiance of the suspicious vigilance of the tkspotic 
powers, which interdict to their enslaved subjects the history of 
Vol. III. 3G 


your successes, the rights of human nature, translated into all 
languages, and printed even on the handkerchiefs of women, 
have penetrated every where. Thus Man, subjugated in his 
very conscience which he dares not look into, will read his 
rights engraven even on the bosom of his partner ; thus, as you 
have exercised an influence over the pleasures of Europe by your 
fashions, you will extend that influence over the general happi- 
ness by your virtues. Patriotism brought you together in the 
tempest ; and it will keep you united in the calm. Receive 
your fugitive and unhappy brethren with generosity ; you owe 
them protection, safety, tranquillity, support, by the very Con- 
stitution to which you invite them. Recollect that they were 
your seniors ; share with those who shall express a wish to be 
Citizens, the services and the honours of your Country, the 
common mother of us all; and, restored to the management of 
your affairs, exhibit to your children the example of concord. 

Of the Clergy and the Municipalities, 

THE Clergy and the Church ought not to be confounded 
with each other. The Church is the Assembly of the faithful 
in the same Communion ; the Clergy is the Corporation of it's 
Priests. A Church may exist without Clergy ; such was that 
of the Patriarchs, and such is at this day that of the Quakers : 
a Clergy cannot subsist where there is no Church. 

Rome, plundered by barbarians, resumed over them, by the 
power of speech, the Empire which she had lost by the feeble- 
ness of her arms. The wretched nations of Gaul embraced 
with ardour a Religion w r hich preached charity in this world, 
and promised eternal felicity in that which is to come ; they con- 
trasted the virtues of their first Missionaries with the robberies 
of their conquerors. The Priests, supported by popular favour, 
acquired an unbounded authority. Masters of the conscience, 
they soon became so likewise of the fortunes, and even oi the 
persons of men. As they were the only men who knew how 
to read and write, they became the sole depositaries of testa- 
ments. Notaries were at that time clerks, whose dependence 
was on the Pishops : a will was good for nothing, unless the 
testator had left a legacy to the Church. The parish priests of 


that period, were obliged to keep a register of those who took 
the Sacrament at Easter, of those who did not, as well as of their 
good and bad qualities, and to transmit the particulars to the 
Bishops. It is extremely probable that they kept then as they 
do now, a register of births, marriages, and burials. All alms- 
deeds were administered by the Clergy, and they were empow- 
ered to receive gifts and bequests of money, houses, lands, sig- 
niories, nay even of slaves. 

Thus, with so many sources of information, of means and 
of method, the Bishops became ail powerful. It is seen from 
History in what manner they employed power over Kings in the 
name of the People, in quality of their Pastors ; over the Peo- 
ple in the name of GOD, in quality of his Ministers ; and over 
Popes themselves, in the name of the Gallican Church, in quali- 
ty of it's Chiefs. Their authority excited the jealousy of Rome. 
That capital of the Christian world opposed to them the monas- 
tic orders, which held immediately of her, though subjected in 
appearance to the Bishops. The French Clergy then divided 
into two corps, the secular and the regular. Every power is 
enfeebled by being divided. The Monks, who formed the re- 
gular Clergy, being by their Constitution more united among 
themselves, and acknowledging but one only Chief, the Pope, 
extended their power much farther than the members of the 
secular Clergy, frequently distracted by the affairs of the world, 
and subjected to various Bishops, who had not always the same 
views. The secular Clergy domineered in the Cities, the 
Monks diffused their empire over the Country. They would 
soon have acquired a decided preponderancy over the whole 
Kingdom, had they formed only one order, like the Monks of 
St. Bazile in Russia. But under the apprehension, perhaps, that 
they should not be able as these last to render themselves inde- 
pendent by their riches, Rome herself divided her own strength. 
She introduced into France a great variety of religious orders, 
the superiors of which resided at Rome ; and who not only 
parcelled out the ecclesiastical functions among themselves, but 
even invaded a part of the secular employments. Most of 
them were originally mendicants, and introduced themselves 
under the pretext, so specious, of charity. The Dominicans, at 
first preaching brothers, afterwards became inquisitors. The 


Benedictines became the record-keepers in an age when hardl) 
any one could either read or write, and undertook a part of the 
public education, which communicates so much influence over 
the mind. They were imitated, and speedily surpassed, by the 
Jesuits, who united in their own order alone the talents of all 
the rest, and very soon all their power. Others did not think 
themselves degraded by compounding essences, preparing cho- 
colate, knitting silk stockings, and engaging in trade. Some 
were sent as Missionaries into foreign countries. Though 
preaching Christianity, they accompanied our soldiers in their 
conquests, and acquired lands in America, and slaves in Af- 
rica to cultivate them. Others, as the Mathurins, enriched 
themselves by begging for the purpose of ransoming Christian 
captives taken by the barbarians of Africa. They redeemed 
white slaves on the Coast of Morocco, because, as they alleg- 
ed, they were Christians : many other Monks were at the same 
time purchasing black slaves on the Coast of Guinea, to supply 
their plantations in America, and making Christians of them to 
rivet the chains of their captivity. 

At length the civil power began to open it's eyes to it's own 
interests. It set out by withdrawing, in part, the public educa- 
tion out of the hands of the Monks and Clergy, by the estab- 
lishment of Universities : afterwards Municipal Notaries were 
appointed, and to them was confided the trust of superintending 
the making and execution of wills : it was expressly prohibited 
to bequeath landed property to ecclesiastical corps, already far 
too rich ; but, by one of those contradictions so common in our 
laws, the parish priests were still enjoined to keep public regis- 
ters of births, marriages and deaths, in the view of ascertaining 
the state of population. This office clearly belonged to the 
Municipalities ; but the People, inured to servitude, were like 
the old mule to which the Athenians granted liberty in consi- 
deration of her long services, but which, from bein